Australian Tropical Rainforest Plants - Online edition

Barringtonia calyptrata (Miers) R.Br. ex F.M.Bailey

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Leaves, flowers and buds. © Stanley Breeden
Flowers and buds. © CSIRO
Leaves and fruit. © CSIRO
Fruit, side view, transverse section and seed. © W. T. Cooper
10th leaf stage. © CSIRO
Seedling. © CSIRO
Cotyledon and 1st leaf stage, hypogeal germination. © CSIRO
Cotyledon and 1st leaf stage, hypogeal germination. © CSIRO
Scale bar 10mm. © CSIRO

Bailey, F.M. (1907) Queensland Agricultural Journal 18: 125.

Common name

Pine, Cassowary; Pine, China; Mango Pine; Barringtonia, Blue-fruited; Blue-fruited Barringtonia; Corned-beef Wood; Cornbeef Wood; China Pine; Cassowary Pine; Barringtonia; Pine, Mango; Mango


Bark surface on larger trees somewhat scalloped. Both inner and outer blazes very fibrous. Deciduous; leafless for a period in August or September.


Leaf blade often rather large, about 15-39 x 5-13 cm. Twig bark rather strong and fibrous when stripped. Midrib of the leaf also rather strong and fibrous. Lateral veins curving and forming inconspicuous loops inside the blade margin. Old leaves turn red prior to falling.


Flowers +/- sessile. Calyx completely fused at the bud stage, shed as a cap or rupturing to form lobes. Petals about 1-3 cm long.


Fruits more or less fleshy when ripe, ovoid or spindle-shaped, about 5-9.5 x 4-6.5 cm.


Roots grow from the opposite end of the seed to the leafy shoot. Cataphylls gradually increasing in size up the stem grading into leaves and sometimes occur among the true leaves. At the tenth leaf stage: leaves elliptic, apex acuminate; lateral veins forming loops inside the blade margin; teeth more pronounced along the upper half of the leaf blade. Seed germination time 43 to 430 days.

Distribution and Ecology

Occurs in CYP and NEQ. Altitudinal range from sea level to 200 m. Grows in well developed lowland rain forest and beach forest. Also occurs in New Guinea and the Aru Islands.

Natural History & Notes

Fruits eaten by Cassowaries. Cooper & Cooper (1994).

A species which is already in cultivation deserves to be used more often, especially in parklands. Will withstand wet or seasonally dry conditions and produces creamy yellow flowers in long pendulous racemes.

This species has been used as a fish poison. ( /herbage/A3366.htm)

Produces a useful general purpose timber. Wood specific gravity 0.73. Cause et al. (1989).

Michelia calyptrata (Miers) Kuntze, Revisio Generum Plantarum : 240(1891). Huttum calyptratum (Miers) Britten, The Journal of Botany 39 : 67(1901). Butonica calyptrata Miers, Transactions of the Linnean Society of London, Botany ser. 2, 1 : 76(1875), Type: Lizard Island, Qld, Aug. 1770, J. Banks & D. Solander; holo: BM, iso: K. Fide J. Payens, Blumea 15: 219 (1968). Barringtonia edulis Seem., Flora Vitiensis : 82(1868), Type: Viti Levu and Viwa (Seemann! n. 150).
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