Commercial Timbers

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H. G. Richter and M. J. Dallwitz

Cynometra spp. (Kekatong)

Nomenclature etc. FABACEAE-CAESALPINIOIDEAE. Cynometra malaccensis, C. ramiflora, C. elmeri, C. inaequifolia, C. mirabilis. Trade and local names: kekatong, belangan (MY); katong, katong-katong (MY-sar/sab); kateng, kepel (ID); oringen, balitbitan (PH); chum-prinh (KH); mangkhak, katong (TH). Not protected under CITES regulations.

Tree. Geographic distribution: Thailand, Laos, Vietnam, Cambodia and Indomalesia.

General. Heartwood basically dark brown, with streaks. Sapwood colour distinct from heartwood colour. Density (0.72–)0.85–1.06(–1.15) g/cm³.

Vessels. Vessels present. Wood diffuse-porous. Vessels arranged in no specific pattern, in multiples, commonly short (2–3 vessels) radial rows or radial rows of 4 or more. Average tangential vessel diameter 120–140(–220) µm. Average number of vessels/mm² 2–5(–10). Perforation plates simple. Intervessel pits alternate, average diameter (vertical) 3–4(–5) µm, vestured. Vessel-ray pits with distinct borders, similar to intervessel pits. Helical thickenings absent. Tyloses in vessels absent. Other deposits in heartwood vessels not observed.

Tracheids and fibres. Fibres of medium wall thickness to very thick-walled. Average fibre length 1500–2500 µm. Fibre pits mainly restricted to radial walls, simple to minutely bordered. Fibres non-septate.

Axial parenchyma. Axial parenchyma present, banded. Occasionally with narrow marginal bands. Axial parenchyma paratracheal. Paratracheal axial parenchyma aliform, or confluent. Aliform parenchyma lozenge. Axial parenchyma as strands. Average number of cells per axial parenchyma strand (2–)4.

Rays. Rays 8–10 per tangential mm, multiseriate (also if only few), (1–)2–3(–4) cells wide. Rays composed of two or more cell types (heterocellular). Heterocellular rays with square and upright cells restricted to marginal rows, mostly 1 marginal row of upright or square cells.

Storied structures. Storied structure absent.

Secretory structures. Intercellular canals absent.

Cambial variants. Included phloem absent.

Mineral inclusions. Crystals present, prismatic, located in ray cells or axial parenchyma cells. Crystal-containing ray cells upright and/or square or procumbent, upright and/or square ray cells chambered. Crystal-containing axial parenchyma cells chambered. Number of crystals per cell or chamber one. Cystoliths absent. Silica not observed.

Illustrations. • Transverse section. Cynometra inaequifolia. • Tangential section. Cynometra inaequifolia. • Radial section. Cynometra inaequifolia.


The interactive key allows access to the character list, illustrations, full and partial descriptions, diagnostic descriptions, differences and similarities between taxa, lists of taxa exhibiting specified attributes, summaries of attributes within groups of taxa, and geographical distribution.

Cite this publication as: ‘Richter, H.G., and Dallwitz, M.J. 2000 onwards. Commercial timbers: descriptions, illustrations, identification, and information retrieval. In English, French, German, Portuguese, and Spanish. Version: 25th June 2009. http://delta-intkey.com’.

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