Scientific name: Litsea myristicifolia
Family name: Lauraceae
Nutmeg Laurel trees in Taman Tugu
Nutmeg Laurel tree is an indigenous rainforest tree amongst the 4,100 trees added to the Taman Tugu site, selected in collaboration with Forest Research Institute of Malaysia (“FRIM”) and Malaysian Nature Society (“MNS”). This is one of the species being added which is considered as ‘Critically Endangered’ on the International Union for Conservation of Nature (“IUCN”) Red List of Threatened Species. This species is being threatened due to deforestation.
This is an evergreen tree that can grow up to 30m tall. The bole can be up to 60cm in diameter with short buttresses up to 100cm high. The leaves are alternate and stalked leaves have leathery leaf blades that are usually elliptic. The leaf blades are greenish above and pale brown with a white, waxy layer below when they are dry and the new leaves are reddish to orange in color. The tree produces flower at the leaf axils. The fruits are round and white color that are up to 1 cm wide. They are fleshy structure formed by the persistent calyx.
The wood is used for construction finishing such as flooring and windows. The wood is also used in furniture production.
These trees grow in lowland to montane forest. They are native to Malaysia and Singapore.