Manggis Daun Besar
Scientific name: Garcinia nervosa
Family name: Clusiaceae (Guttiferae)
Manggis Daun Besar trees in Taman Tugu
The Manggis Daun Besar tree is an indigenous rainforest species found amongst the 4,100 trees added to the Taman Tugu site, selected in collaboration with the Forest Research Institute of Malaysia (“FRIM”) and Malaysian Nature Society (“MNS”).
This evergreen medium-large tree is a mid-canopy rainforest tree, which can grow up to 30m in height. The crown is conical, relatively open, with tiered horizontal branching. The branches are typically restricted to upper parts of crown in wild trees. All parts of plant exude yellowish latex when bruised. The opposite, stoutly stalked leaves have leathery leaf blades that are oblong, with strongly-ribbed abaxial veins. The young reddish leaves turn whitish-green, then green when mature. The flowers grow in large clusters, with separate male and female flowers. Each flower is small, with creamy-white fleshy petals, scented like lime or sour milk, opening at dusk, The female flowers are more strongly-scented, with sterile stamens and producing lots of honey.
The fruits are pear-shaped to round, ripening from green to blotchy or pale yellow and contain up to five red seeds in the white pulp.
The fruit is edible, it has a soft texture and a sour taste. The antioxidant bioflavonoids found in fruits and seeds. Medicinally, the leaves are pounded into paste, boiled in coconut oil, and rubbed onto body and joints for pain relief. The pale brown wood is hard and fairly durable if sheltered from outdoor elements. The branches are used to make canoe paddles, whilst the split stems are used to construct framework for huts. The wood is also used for posts, beams and roofing.
These tropical trees grow in riverine and seasonally-swampy areas in lowland rainforests, on relatively flat terrain with poorly-drained alluvial soils, and sometimes found in coastal forests. These trees are native to Peninsular Malaysia, Borneo, Singapore, the Sumatra, and the Philippines.