Monday, December 16, 2013

Tembusu Tree, 香灰梨木

The Tembusu is one of Singapore's most distinctive trees. The Tembusu (Fagraea fragrans) is a large evergreen tree in the family Gentianaceae. The tree can grow up to 40m in height.
Its trunk is dark brown, with deeply fissured bark, looking somewhat like a bitter gourd.

Image credited to Singapore National Park
Its leaves are light green and oval in shape. Flowering season in May - June and October - November. Its yellowish flowers bloom at sun set time, have a distinct fragrance and the fruits of the tree are bitter tasting red berries, which are eaten by birds and fruit bats.

The Tembusu tree at Singapore Botanic Gardens has been identified as a heritage tree and is featured on the Singapore $5 currency note and in postage stamps of Singapore.  This Heritage Tree is reportedly more than 150 years old.

Tembusu Tree in Botanic Garden, Singapore

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