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Family: HERNANDIACEAE  

 Gyrocarpus americanus
 


Barry Stock's photo of the Fairchild tree.

 
Author:   Nicolaas Joseph von Jacquin, 1763
Family:  Hernandiaceae
Origin:  Pacific Region, Asia
Soil:  Peat or Mix
Water:  Medium
Sun:  Maximum
Thickness:  80 centimetres
Height:  22 metres
Flower:  Whitish - Yellowish-Green
Propagate:  Seeds/(Cuttings?)
Names:  Propellerbaum, Whirly Whirly Tree Burl, Stinkwood, Helicopter Tree, Shitwood, Arbre d’Helicoptére
Synonyms:  Gyrocarpus jacquinii Gardner, 1791. Gyrocarpus asiaticus Willd. 1805. 


 Barry Stock's photo of his own plant.


The young leaves are pubescent and have a significant sent.


Barry Stock's photo of the Fairchild plant's leaves.


The seeds.
Grit 5 mm.


A young tree.
Photo by Boris "Puk" Vrskovy in southern India.

   This member of the Hernandiaceae family was described by Nicolaas Joseph von Jacquin in 1763. It is found all around the Pacific region (South America, Papau New Guinea, Australia and more) and Asia. It grows in a well drained peat with some water and lots of sun. It can be reproduced by seeds and probably by cuttings. The flowers are small and whitish to yellowish-green, and male and bisexual flowers grow in the same flower-head. The fruits are olive-shaped, large, tough, woody, dry, and blackish. The seeds are slightly winged.

The genera name means 'round fruit'. The species name means 'American'.

In Malaysia, there are three subspecies: Gyrocarpus americanus caperonianus, with lobed and smooth leaves, from Southern Madagascar; Gyrocarpus americanus glaber, with entire, not lobed, smooth leaves, from Western and South-Western Madagascar; and Gyrocarpus americanus tomentosus, with dense hairs on both sides of the leaves, from Northern Madagascar (Schatz, 2001).

Often seen with synonym: Gyrocarpus jacquinii.

Also seen as a member of the Combretaceae family.

The sap can cause blindness.

Often confused with Firmiana colorata. Besides from the non-flat leaves with shorter drip-tips, the Gyrocarpus have a significant smell.


 
The beginning...

 
The stem. Photo by Boris "Puk" Vrskovy in southern India.

 
Barry Stock's photo of his own plant. Stem left, leaf right.

  
The flower from Skipas.wordpress.com.                                               The fruits from Latin-wife.com.            

Kingdom SubKingdom SuperDivision Division SubDivision Class SubClass SuperOrder Order Family Genus Species
PLANTAE Tracheophyta Spermatophytes Magnoliophyta Magnoliophytina Magnoliopsida

Magnoliidae

Lauranae

Laurales Hernandiaceae Gyrocarpus americanus