Fagraea fragrans Roxb.


Fagraea fragrans Roxb.




Fagraea wallichiana Benth., Fagraea cochinchinensis A. Chev., Fagraea sororia J.J. Smith, Fagraea gigantea Ridley.

Vernacular Names

Malaysia Tembusu hu­tan (General), tembusu padang, tembusu tembaga (Peninsular).
English Ironwood.
Indonesia Ki badak (Sundanese), kayu tammusu (Sumatra), ambinaton (Kalimantan).
Thailand Kankrao (Central), man pIa (Northern), thamsao (Peninsular).
Philippines Urung (General), dolo (Tagbanua), susulin (Tagalog).
Myanmar Anan, ahnyim.
Cambodia Tatraou.
Laos Man pa.


Geographical Distributions

Fagraea fragrans is found in India (Bengal), Burma (Myan­mar), the Andaman Islands, Indo-China, Thai­land, Peninsular Malaysia, Singapore, Sumatra, Borneo, Sulawesi, the south-western Philippines and Yapen Island (Irian Jaya); naturalised in West Java.


Fagraea fragrans is a medium-sized or occasionally large tree up to 25(-55) m tall. Its bole measures up to 135(-250) cm in diametre, occasionally fluted or with buttresses up to 2.5 m high. The surface of the bark is deeply irregularly fissured and dark brown while the inner bark is brown to yellow.

The leaves are oblong-Iance-shaped to obovate-oblong, measuring 4-15 cm x 1.5-6 cm and usually with short to long, broadly acuminate apex. The secondary veins are slightly prominent to indistinct below, 1-2.5 cm long petiole while the stipules are rounded and partly free from the petiole.

The inflorescence is an axillary while the pedicel and bracteoles are at or below the middle. The flowers are fragrant, with narrowly funnel-shaped petal tube, measuring 0.7-2.3 cm long, with headed stigma and faintly 2-lobed.

The fruit is 0.7-1 cm long, broadly ellipsoid and orange or red.

Ecology / Cultivation

Fagraea fragrans oc­curs in light primary and secondary forests in hu­mid or seasonally inundated locations, but it avoids stagnant water. It grows well in poorly-aerated, compact clay soils, and in poor sandy or shallow sandstone soils. In freshwater swamp for­ests, it is found in association with Melaleuca spp. It also occurs naturally as a pioneer in burnt-over areas and “lalang” grasslands. The density of the wood is 510-930 kg/m3 at 15% moisture content.

Line Drawing / Photograph


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  1. Plant Resources of South-East Asia No.5(2): Timber trees: Minor commercial timbers.