Semecarpus australiensis (Australian Cashew Nut) (Anacardiaceae)

Semecarpus australiensis (Australian cashew nut)

Australia’s answer to the Brazilian cashew nut!

In tropical rainforest regions of Australia, the Australian Cashew Nut is a food resource, but as with it’s Brazilian counterparts, the nuts require special preparation. Aborigines obviously took effort and care to obtain and prepare the nuts as the sap from fruit wall is a strong irritant.

The early explorer Ludwig Leichhardt had first hand experience of the nourishment and also with noxiousness afforded by the tree, praising the agreeable flavour of the nuts on one hand but describing on the other how the sap from the fruit wall gave him severe blisters in his mouth.

Semecarpus australiensis (Australian cashew nut)
Fruits closeup. The orange fleshy part is a swollen receptable (stalk that holds the fruit).

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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 Anacardiaceae (Mango family), Edible plants, Habitat - Rain forest, Lifeform - Trees & Shrubs and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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