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Polyalthia cerasoides

Description from Flora of China

Uvaria cerasoides Roxburgh, Pl. Coromandel 1: 30. 1795; Polyalthia crassipetala Merrill.

Trees to 20 m tall. Bark grayish black. Branchlets densely pubescent, glabrescent, lenticellate with age. Petiole 2-3 mm, sparsely hispid; leaf blade oblong, oblong-lanceolate, or sometimes elliptic, 6-19 × 2.5-6 cm, abaxially yellowish and pubescent, adaxially often bluish green when dry and glabrous except for minutely hairy midvein, secondary veins 7 or 8 on each side of midvein, base broadly cuneate to rounded, apex obtuse. Inflorescences axillary, 1-flowered. Flowers 1-2 cm in diam. Pedicel 1-2 cm, puberulent, with 1 or 2 leafy bracteoles below middle. Sepals oblong-ovate, 8-9 mm, outside pilose, apex acuminate. Petals green but black when dry, subequal or inner petals shorter than outer petals, oblong-ovate, 8-9 mm, thickly leathery, puberulent. Stamens cuneate; connectives apically truncate. Carpels oblong, pubescent; ovule 1 per carpel; stigmas ovoid, apex entire. Monocarp stipes 1.5-2 cm, weak; monocarps red but black when dry, ovoid to subglobose, ca. 6 mm in diam., glabrous. Fl. Mar-May, fr. Apr-Nov. 2n = 18.

A fine strong bast fiber obtained from the inner bark of Polyalthia cerasoides is used to make rope and sacks. The wood is used for farming tools and structural timbers. The flowers are very fragrant and are sometimes collected as a perfume.

Sparsely forested slopes; 100-1100 m. S Guangdong, S Guangxi, Hainan, S Yunnan [Cambodia, India, Laos, Myanmar, Thailand, Vietnam].


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