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Mascarenhasia arborescens

An attractive ornamental, Mascarenhasia arborescens was an important source of natural rubber in Madagascar in the early 1900s.
Detail of herbarium specimen for Mascarenhasia arborescens

Detail of a herbarium specimen of Mascarenhasia arborescens.

Species information

Scientific name: 

Mascarenhasia arborescens A.DC.

Conservation status: 

Not yet rated according to IUCN Red List criteria, but given its broad geographic distribution it is unlikely to be threatened globally.


Evergreen forest and on riverine fringes; in moist areas, particularly along stream banks.

Key Uses: 

Traditional medicine, ornamental, source of natural rubber.

Known hazards: 

None known.


Genus: Mascarenhasia

About this species

Mascarenhasia arborescens has beautiful, delicate flowers with an exquisite scent. Its attractive habit and dark red petioles and midribs add to its horticultural merit.

The generic name is taken from the French ‘Mascareignes’ referring to a group of islands in the Indian Ocean to the east of Madagascar. The specific epithet arborescens refers to its tree-like habit. The genus Mascarenhasia contains eight species of shrubs and small trees, all of which can be found in Madagascar.


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