Commercial Timbers


H. G. Richter and M. J. Dallwitz

Castanopsis spp., SE Asia (Berangan)

Nomenclature etc. FAGACEAE. Major species: Castanopsis acuminatissima, C. argentea, C. javanica, C. tungurrut. Trade and local names: berangan, saninten, New Guinea oak (PG, trade); Malayan chestnut, jertek tangga kata (MY); Philippine chestnut (PH); katia (MM); ko (LA); ko, ko-nam (TH). Not protected under CITES regulations.

Tree. Geographic distribution: India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka to Indomalesia.

General. Growth ring boundaries distinct or indistinct or absent. Growth ring limits, if present, marked by few rows of flattened latewood fibres. Heartwood basically brown, without streaks. Sapwood colour similar to heartwood colour. Density 0.52–0.6–0.8 g/cm³.

Vessels. Wood diffuse-porous. Vessels arranged in diagonal and/or radial pattern, exclusively solitary. Vessel outline rounded. Average tangential vessel diameter 120–270 µm. Average number of vessels/mm² 2–18. Perforation plates simple. Intervessel pits alternate, average diameter (vertical) 6–8 µm. Information on pits refer to vasicentric tracheids only. Vessel-ray pits with reduced borders or apparently simple, different from intervessel pits, horizontal to vertical. Helical thickenings absent. Tyloses in vessels present, thinwalled.

Tracheids and fibres. Vascular or vasicentric tracheids commonly present (vasicentric). Fibres of medium wall thickness. Average fibre length 900–1800 µm. Fibre pits mainly restricted to radial walls, simple to minutely bordered. Helical thickenings absent. Fibres non-septate.

Axial parenchyma. Axial parenchyma banded or not banded. Axial parenchyma bands reticulate, fine, up to three cells wide. Axial parenchyma apotracheal, or paratracheal. Apotracheal axial parenchyma diffuse-in-aggregates. Paratracheal axial parenchyma scanty. Axial parenchyma as strands. Average number of cells per axial parenchyma strand 5–8.

Rays. Rays 7–15 per tangential mm, exclusively uniseriate or multiseriate (also if only few), 1 cells wide (rarely 2–3 seriates). Aggregate rays present (occasionally). Rays composed of a single cell type (homocellular); homocellular ray cells procumbent.

Storied structures. Storied structure absent.

Secretory structures. Oil and mucilage cells absent. Intercellular canals absent. Laticifers or tanniniferous tubes absent.

Cambial variants. Included phloem absent.

Mineral inclusions. Crystals present, prismatic, located in axial parenchyma cells. Crystal-containing axial parenchyma cells chambered. Number of crystals per cell or chamber one. Silica not observed.

Illustrations. • Transverse section. Castanopsis malayana. • Transverse section. Castanopsis sp. • Tangential section. Castanopsis malaccensis. • Radial section. Castanopsis fordii.

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.’.