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Pterocarpus macrocarpus Kurz

Family Name: Fabaceae (Leguminosae)
Synonyms: Pterocarpus cambodianus var. parviflorus, Lingoum , Lingoum , Pterocarpus pedatus, Abrus glaucinum, Pterocarpus gracilis var. brevipes, Pterocarpus macrocarpus var. oblongus, Lingoum parviflorum, Lingoum cambodianum, Lingoum pedatum, Lingoum oblongum
Common Name: Padauk, Burma Padauk, Rosewood, Burmese Rosewood, Angsana, Narra, 紫檀
Full Sun: 6-8h Moderate Water Fragrant Ornamental Flowers Dry Soils / Drought Tree


Family Name
Genus Epithet
Species Epithet
Name Authority
Name Status (botanical)
Common Names

Classifications and Characteristics

Plant Division Angiosperms (Flowering Seed Plants) (Dicotyledon)
Plant Growth Form Tree (Medium (16m-30m))
Lifespan (in Singapore) Perennial
Mode of Nutrition Autotrophic
Plant Shape Rounded
Maximum Height 15 m to 30 m


Native Distribution Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, Thailand, Vietnam
Preferred Climate Zone Tropical

Description and Ethnobotany

Others - Plant Morphology Growth Form: Deciduous tree with a rounded or spreading crown. Leaf fall occurs during the dry season. Habitat: This species occurs in dry, open Dipterocarp forests that are deciduous or semi-deciduous. It is found at altitudes of up to 700 m and locations where annual rainfall is 1,000 - 2,000 mm. Populations have dwindled due to overexploitation for its timber and conversion of forests to farmland. Trunk: Young trees have pale brown, slightly fissured bark, while mature trees have dark brown to grey, scaly bark. The fibrous inner bark is reddish brown and contains scattered drops of red sap. Foliage: Compound leaves (15 - 25 cm long) are odd-pinnate with 7 - 13 alternate leaflets. Leaflets are elliptic with rounded bases and pointed tips (2 - 3.5 cm wide, 4 - 7.5 cm long). Flowers: Pea-like flowers consist of 4 - 5 petals with wavy margins (1.4 - 1.7 cm wide). Flowers are arranged in axillary panicles (a branched inflorescence emerging from the leaf axils) or racemes (spike-like inflorescences with flowers borne on stalks). In the tropics, flowering occurs from February to April. Fruits: Disc-shaped, indehiscent pod with a wavy, membranous wing surrounding its perimeter (4 - 7 cm wide). The central compartment of the pod contains 1 - 4 smooth, brown to red-brown seeds (0.9 cm long). It is classified as a samara. Fruits are produced from July to December. Landscaping: This species provides excellent shade, has strong branches and produces relatively small amounts of litter. Each year, massive amounts of yellow flowers cover the canopy and help to brighten the landscape. It would be ideal as an amenity tree in parks and large gardens. Mature trees grown in clay or wet soils have large spreading roots that could destroy nearby pavement. Cultivation: This species is not commonly cultivated and relatively little is known about its growth requirements. Pterocarpus species typically produce a large number of seeds. Germination will occur faster if the seeds are removed from the fruit. However, extracting the seeds is difficult, so they are often planted while still in the fruit. Seeds should be first soaked in warm water (35 - 40 degrees Celsius) before planting. Plant in well-drained sandy loam. Propagation: Propagate by seed or stem cutting. Etymology: The genus name "Pterocarpus" refers to the winged fruits of species in this genus. It is derived from 2 Greek words, "pteron" which means wing and "karpos" meaning fruit. The species epithet "macrocarpus" comes from the Greek words "macro" meaning large and "karpos" meaning fruit.
Ethnobotanical Uses [Others]: Medicine: Tree sap is applied externally to heal diseases of the mouth. The roots are used in traditional medicine. Other: The valuable heartwood is considered a luxury timber. It varies in colour from orange-yellow to reddish-brown and has beautiful markings. It is used to make fine furniture, musical instruments, and decorative objects. The wood contains pterocarpans which inhibit termites and other insects from attacking the wood. The wood is also used as building material, because of its insect resistant properties. The resin can be used to colour items red.

Landscaping Features

Desirable Plant Features Fragrant (Flowers) (Day), Ornamental Flowers
Plant & Rootzone Preference - Tolerance Fertile Loamy Soils, Well-Drained Soils, Dry Soils / Drought
Landscape Uses General, Shade Providing Tree / Palm
SGMP Treatment
Plant & Rootzone Preference or Tolerance Remarks Sandy loam
Species record last updated on: 14 October 2021.