University of Moratuwa, Katubedda, Sri Lanka.

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This is native to Sri Lanka. There are two species of Xylocarpus. They can be seen in Western and Northwestern mangroves communities of Sri Lanka.

1. Xylocarpus granatum

This species is commonly known as spurred mangrove or Indian mangrove. The medium-sized tree is columnar or This This is a medium sized evergreen tree with dark brown petiole and bark. Leaves are alternate and pinnate, and it turns orange -brown when drying. These compound large leaves have 1-3 pairs of leaflets. Flowers bloom on long flowering branches with 4 petals. Petals are round and the edges are overlapping. The large spherical fruit is about 17-25cm in diameter. And it has a croaky leathery covering which usually splits into 4 pieces as the fruit dries. Surface roots are compressed laterally forming a spreading network of ribbon like pneumatophores with the upper edges protruding above mud.

2. Xylocarpus moluccensis

This species grows up to 30m in height and the trunk grows up to 70cm in diameter. The flowers are creamy white in color and they bloom on long flowering branches. The round fruit grows up to 11cm and it is about the size of a small orange. The fruit it dark brown, compressed and wrinkled.


Xylocarpus granatum barks are used in folk medicine. They are also used to make tannins and dyes. Both species are used as firewood and in making furniture. The seed oil is used as a hair-shining treatment. The roots are used to make paint brushes.

Penned By : Rtr. Dilrukshi Wijethunga

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