Mallotus philippensis (Euphorbiaceae)

Mallotus is a member of the spurge family and consist of around 9 species in Far North Queensland. M. philippensis is probably one of the most distinctive by virtue of their orange-red fruits. The Kamala has male and female flowers occuring in different trees, a feature quite common in the Euphorbiaceae.

Mallotus philippensis

Mallotus philippensis

While often encountered as a shrub, this species can grow up to 10 m tall. Like many species of Mallotus, the undersides of the leaves of this species are glaucous and rusty velvety. is a tree found throughout India. This species is well known in India where it has been called the Kamala tree and used for various purposes. It has been used in Ayurvedic medicine and also a source of dye, paints and varnishes (see link).


Van Welzen PC, Kulju KKM, Sierra SEC, Slik JWF. 2010. Key to the Malesian species of Mallotus (Euphorbiaceae). Blumea 55, 285-290. (link to pdf)


About David Tng

I am David Tng, a hedonistic botanizer who pursues plants with a fervour. I chase the opportunity to delve into various aspects of the study of plants. I have spent untold hours staring at mosses and allied plants, taking picture of pollen, culturing orchids in clean cabinets, counting tree rings, monitoring plant flowering times, etc. I am currently engrossed in the study of plant ecology (a grand excuse to see 'anything I can). Sometimes I think of myself as a shadow taxonomist, a sentimental ecologist, and a spiritual environmentalist - but at the very root of it all, a "plant whisperer"!
This entry was posted in Euphorbiaceae (Spurge Family), Habitat - Coastal forest, Habitat - Rain forest, Lifeform - Trees & Shrubs, Medicinal Plants, Useful plants and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

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