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Sea almond (Terminalia catappa)

Ketapang or tropical almond or beach almond or talisay tree or umbrella tree or sea almond (Terminalia catappa) are species of trees that are shady, fast growing, forming multi-level canopy and are often used as shade trees in parks and roadside.

T. catappa grows large, up to 40 m tall and has a trunk of up to 1.5 m, leafy canopy with branches that grow horizontally and stratified, young trees often look like pagodas while old and large trees often have roots air up to 3 m.

Dlium Sea almond (Terminalia catappa)

The leaves are scattered, mostly crammed at the tips of the twigs, short-stemmed, inverted egg-shaped rounds, 8-38x5-19 cm, wide ends with narrowed shoots and bases, smooth upper surface and smooth hairy lower surface, green but reddish if it will fall out.

The flowers are small, collected in ears near the end of the branch, 8-25 cm long and yellow green. Flowers are not crowned, the petals have five stems, plate or bell shaped, 4-8 mm and white or cream. Stamens in two circles and arranged five-five.

The ovate fruit is somewhat flattened, narrow or winged, has a size of 2.5-7x4-5.5 cm, green or yellow or red, reddish purple when ripe and black when dry. The fruit has a cork lining that can float in river and sea water for months for expansion, also spread by bats.

Sea almonds grows anywhere in tropical climate, but is best on coastal climate and lowlands to an altitude of 400 m above sea level, rainfall from 3 to 3,500 mm/year and drought for up to 6 months. Trees drop leaves twice a year which can withstand the dry months.



Tree bark and leaves are used for tanning and materials for making ink. Wood produces dyes for yellow, brown, olive and contains 11–23% tannins, while leaves contain 12 kinds of tannins that can be hydrolyzed.

The wood is pale red to brownish, has a 0.465-0.675 BJ that is hard and resilient but not very durable. This wood is known in trade as red-brown terminalia and is used as floor coverings or veneers, boats and spices.

The seeds are eaten raw or cooked and used as a substitute for almonds in cakes. The dried seed core produces yellow oil and contains fatty acids including palmitic acid (55.5%), oleic acid (23.3%), linoleic acid, stearic acid and myristic acid. This dried seed also contains protein (25%), sugar (16%) and various kinds of amino acids.

Kingdom: Plantae
Clade: Tracheophytes
Clade: Angiosperms
Clade: Eudicots
Clade: Rosids
Order: Myrtales
Family: Combretaceae
Genus: Terminalia
Species: T. catappa

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