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Clausena anisum-olens (Blanco) Merrill

Clausena anisum-olens (Blanco) Merrill




Cookia anisum-olens Blanco, Clausena laxiflora Quis. & Merrill, Clausena sanki (Perr.) Molino.

Vernacular Names

Philippines Anis, kayumanis (Tagalog), danglais (Bagobo).

Geographical Distributions

Clausena anisum-olens is endemic to the Philippines and Borneo. In the Philippines, it is distributed all over the archipelago and also cultivated occasionally. It is sporadically cultivated in gardens in China, Taiwan, Vietnam and Indonesia. In China (Guangxi, Guangdong and Yunnan), it seems to occur naturalised as well.


C. anisum-olens is an evergreen shrub or small tree that can reach up to 2-6(-15) m tall and bears some essential-oil glands on all aerial parts which emit a strong anise or anise-like smell when crushed.

The leaves are arranged alternately, imparipinnately compound, measure 20-55(-100) cm long and hairless to hairy. The petiolules are 1-5 mm long. The leaflets are 7-13(-19), alternate to subopposite, ovate to lance-shaped, measuring 3-25 cm x 1-10 cm where the largest ones is near the apex, oblique at the base, undulate-crenulate at the margin, acute-acuminate at the apex and densely dotted with pellucid glands.

The inflorescence is a terminal (rarely axillary) measures 6-40 cm long and with a conical panicle. The pedicel measures up to 2 mm long. The flowers are spherical in bud measuring 6-8 mm in diametre when opened, regular, with 5-merous and fragrant. The green sepal is 5-lobed measures 0.5-1 mm long. There are 5 free petals, which are ovate-elliptical, measure 4-5 mm long, with membranaceous and whitish-green. There are 10 free stamens where the filaments are geniculate, with white and yellow anthers. The ovary is spherical to somewhat pentagonal, measures about 1 mm long and wide; with 5-locular, born on gynophore is 0.3-0.5 mm long, with the style is 1 mm long and the stigma is slightly 5-lobed.

The fruit is a berry with 1(-3)-seeded, slightly spherical (rarely ovoid), measuring 0.8-1.6 cm in diametre and whitish-green but turns pinkish at maturity. The seed is green.

Ecology / Cultivation

C. anisum-olens grows naturally in the understorey of rainforests, on various soil types (including limestone) and up to 1500 m altitude. In cultivation in Indonesia, it only performed well up to 500 m altitude. In Solok (west-central Sumatra), it grows well in 2000 mm annual rainfall maximum in March and November and a minimum of about 75 mm per month from June to August, with maximum temperatures of about 30°C and minima of about 20°C throughout the year, and on poor, acid (pH 4.0-4.2) soils.

Line Drawing / Photograph



  1. Plant Resources of South-East Asia No. 19: Essential-oil plants.

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