Lee Kong Chian Natural History Museum

Ximenia americana Linnaeus

Kingdom:Plantae
Phylum/Division:Magnoliophyta
Class:Eudicots
Order:Santalales
Family:Olacaceae
Genus:Ximenia
Species:X. americana
Common Names:Sea Lime, Tallow Wood, Bedara Laut
Status:Common

Description

Ximenia americana is a seashore treelet or shrub, with thorns in its leaf-axils. The leaves are elliptical. The flowers are small and greenish white with four petals which are covered with thick hairs on the inside. The fruit is plum-like, green when unripe, turning to yellow and then orange when fully ripe.

Read more about the Santalales order.
Read more about the Olacaceae family.

General Biology

Its fruits are laden with prussic acid and are extremely bitter.

Ecological Role

It is said to parasitise on roots, even of its own kind!

Human Uses

Ximenia americana is used as a substitute for sandalwood in South America. Its timber is hard and yellowy-pink.

References

Chong, K. Y., H. T. W. Tan & R. T. Corlett, 2009. A Checklist of the Total Vascular Plant Flora of Singapore: Native, Naturalised and Cultivated Species. Raffles Museum of Biodiversity Research, National University of Singapore, Singapore. 273 pp.

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