Vatica odorata (Griff.) Symington - DIPTEROCARPACEAE

Basionym : Synaptea odorata Griff.

Synonym : Vatica astrotricha Hance
Synaptea faginea Dyer.
Synaptea dyeri Pierre
Vatica faginea Dyer
Vatica grandifolia Dyer
Vatica dyeri Pierre
Vatica curtusii King
Vatica fleuryana Tardieu
Vatica tonkinensis A.Chev.
Hopea faginea Wallich
Perissandra laotica Gagnepain

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Botanical descriptions Habitat and ecology Distribution

Botanical descriptions :

Diagnostic characters : Petals contorted, strong sweet smell. Presence of reddish hairs on petiole, peduncle and pedicel.
Habit : Evergreen tree up to 30 m high, 40 cm in diameter, branches ascending and horizontal to main trunk. Sapwood whitish grey while heartwood brownish.
Trunk & bark : Trunk straight. Bark smooth, slightly hooped, not lenticellate, pustular and greyish.
Branches and branchlets or twigs : Branchlets and twigs terete, tomentose with rough red brown hairs when young.
Exudates : Exudates resinous, white. .
Leaves : Leaves simple alternate and spiral, 9-11 by 3-7.5 cm, elliptic-oblong, apex obtuse or shortly acuminate, attenuate at base, margin entire, blade lathery, glabrous.
Midrib raised above, primary vein single, secondary veins oblique to the midrib, widely parallel, tertiary veins finely reticulate.
Stipules present, triangular, caducous leaving a small scar. Petiole tomentose with reddish hairs.
Inflorescences or flowers : Flowers arranged in terminal and axillary panicle, flowers densely hairy. Flowers creamish-white, petals contorted, with strong sweet smell. Peduncle and pedicel tomentose with reddish hairs.
Fruits : Fruit is a winged nut, 0.8 cm in diameter, globose or conical, reddish green, with 2 big wings obtuse to rounded at tip and 3 small wings four times shorter.
Seeds : Seed 1.

Habitat and ecology :

Found in evergreen and semi-evergreen forests on sandy soil or on old alluvial soil and in open forest as well. Flowering period: January-May; fruiting time: August – October.

Distribution :

Burma (Myanmar), Cambodia, Malay Peninsula, Thailand, Vietnam, and Laos (Khammouane and other provinces, Vientiane, Champassack, Saravane, Savannakhet).

Remark/notes/uses :
The timber is hard, heavy and insect resistant and used in heavy construction and as house pillars.

Specimens studied :
BT 42 (Herbarium of Faculty of Sciences-NUoL, NHN-Leiden and CIRAD-Montpellier).

Literature :
Flore du Cambodge, du Laos et du Viêtnam 1960-2003. Vol. 25. Muséum National d'Histoire Naturelle, Paris, France.
Dung, Vu Van. 1996 . Vietnam Forest Trees. Agriculture Publishing House, Hanoi, Vietnam.
B. Svengsuksa & J.E. Vidal. 1997. Les Dipterocarpacées du Laos. Universite Nationale du Laos, Vientiane, Laos.
Gardner S., Sidisunthorn P. & Anusarnsunthorn V. 2000. A field guide to Forest Trees of Northern Thailand. Kobfai Publishing Project. Bangkok. Thailand.
Rachun Pooma & Mark Newman. 2001. Checklist of Dipterocarpaceae in Thailand, Thai Forest Bulletin, no 29. The Forest Herbarium, Royal Forest Department, Bangkok, Thailand.
Hoang Van Sam, K. Nanthavong & P.J.A. Keβler. 2004. Trees of Laos and Vietnam: A field guide to 100 economically or ecologically important species. Blumea no 49.
Dipterocarps of Vietnam, 2005. Forest Science Institute of Vietnam. Agricultural Publishing House, Hanoi, Vietnam.

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