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Sapotaceae: Madhuca bourdillonii

Comm. J.F.Bourdillon, 386

Comm. J.F.Bourdillon, 386


Madhuca bourdillonii (Gamble) Raiz.

Original Distribution

India, Kerala, Travancore

Extinction Data

IUCN 1997 Endangered


Evergreen trees, up to 20 m tall, young branches clothed with brownish wooly pubescence. Leaves concerted at the ends of young branches, 20 32 x 6-10.5 cm, spatulate obovate, acuminate at apex, broadly cunate or round at base, membranous, glabrous, woolly hairs along the midrib beneath; midrib grooved above, prominent and rounded below; lateral veins 20-27 pairs; petiole stout 7-10 cm long, flattened above, rounded below, brownish wooly pubescent. Flowers in axillary clusters at the ends of branches; pedicels 2-2.5 cm long, angular, thickened towards the apex, cinnamomously tomentose. Sepals 0.7-1 x 0.6 cm, ovate, tomentose except the basal portion within. Corolla 11-12 lobed, 1.2 1.4 cm long; lobes 6.5 7.5 x ca 2 mm, lanceolateto oblong, obtuse sometimes irregularly scarious. Stamens 24, in two distinct whorls5.5-6  mm long, glabrous; filaments filiform, 2.5 3 mm long, geniculate at apex; anthers 3.5 4 mm long, ovoid sagittate, connective acutely prolonged up to 1 mm. Ovary ca 1 x 3 mm, broadly ovoid, 11-12 loculed, glabrous; style up to 2 cm long, filiform, glabrous. Fruits 3-4 cm long, ovoid, single seeded, glabrous. Flowering from September to November; fruiting in March.The species is only known from the type gathering made by Bourdillon during the last decade of the 19th century, probably in 1894 or 1895.

Number of Specimens at Kew


Specimen Type (Y/N)


Kew Herbcat Barcode Number



Comm. J.F.Bourdillon

Collector Number


Date Collected

4th June 1909

Other Information

Species of this genus where particularly softafter for their well rounded trunks. It apparently yield a very high grade quality of timber. Other species in this genus are also used by local people for its oil, medicine, food and fodder. By 1908, Bourdillon already reported that species of this genus have became very rare. And the logging may be the major raison for the extinction of the species. No new report are known after 1908.The species is only known from the Ariankavu and Shendurni Valley I Quilon district in Kerala. It was recorded as very localized. It only occurs in the evergreen forest tropical rain forest in the hills at about 300 m altitude

Information Sources

M. & Nayar, M.P. (1987). Endemic plants of the Indian Region 1: 150. Botanical Survey of India, Calcutta.Anonymous (1962). The wealth of India: Raw Material 6: 207-216, CSIR, New Delhi.Bourdilon, T.F.(1908) Forest trees of Travancore pp 238.Gamble, J.S. (1921) Decades Kewensis. Kew Bulletin 1921: 121.Lam, H.J. (1927). Bull. Jard. Bot. Buitz. 463Nayar, M.P. and Sastry, A.R.K. (eds.) (1990) Red Data Book of Indian Plants. Vol.3. Calcutta, Botanical Survey of India.Oza, G.M. (1973) is present legislation desirable for Madhuca spec. in Western India? Indian For. 99: 392.Royen, P. van (1960). Revision of the Sapotaceae of the Malaysian area in a wider sense XX. Madhuca Gmelin. Blumea 10: 81Vajravelu, E. & Daniel, P. (1983). In Jain, S.K. & Sastry, A.R.K. (comps.) (1983). Materials for a catalogue of threatened plants of India. Botanical Survey of India, HowrahWalter, K.S. and Gillett, H.J. (eds) (1998). 1997 IUCN Red List of Threatened Plants. Compiled by the World Conservation Monitoring Centre IUCN The World Conservation Union, Gland, Switzerland and Cambridge, UK.