Cinnamomum verum

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Cinnamomum verum
Cinnamomum verum1.jpg
Cinnamomum verum foliage and flowers
Scientific classification edit
Kingdom: Plantae
Clade: Tracheophytes
Clade: Angiosperms
Clade: Magnoliids
Order: Laurales
Family: Lauraceae
Genus: Cinnamomum
C. verum
Binomial name
Cinnamomum verum
  • Camphorina cinnamomum (L.) Farw.
  • Cinnamomum alexei Kosterm.
  • Cinnamomum aromaticum J.Graham
  • Cinnamomum barthii Lukman.
  • Cinnamomum bengalense Lukman.
  • Cinnamomum biafranum Lukman.
  • Cinnamomum bonplandii Lukman.
  • Cinnamomum boutonii Lukman.
  • Cinnamomum capense Lukman.
  • Cinnamomum cayennense Lukman.
  • Cinnamomum cinnamomum (L.) H.Karst. nom. inval.
  • Cinnamomum commersonii Lukman.
  • Cinnamomum cordifolium Lukman.
  • Cinnamomum decandollei Lukman.
  • Cinnamomum delessertii Lukman.
  • Cinnamomum ellipticum Lukman.
  • Cinnamomum erectum Lukman.
  • Cinnamomum humboldtii Lukman.
  • Cinnamomum iners Wight nom. illeg.
  • Cinnamomum karrouwa Lukman.
  • Cinnamomum leptopus A.C.Sm.
  • Cinnamomum leschenaultii Lukman.
  • Cinnamomum madrassicum Lukman.
  • Cinnamomum maheanum Lukman.
  • Cinnamomum mauritianum Lukman.
  • Cinnamomum meissneri Lukman.
  • Cinnamomum ovatum Lukman.
  • Cinnamomum pallasii Lukman.
  • Cinnamomum pleei Lukman.
  • Cinnamomum pourretii Lukman.
  • Cinnamomum regelii Lukman.
  • Cinnamomum roxburghii Lukman.
  • Cinnamomum sieberi Lukman.
  • Cinnamomum sonneratii Lukman.
  • Cinnamomum vaillantii Lukman.
  • Cinnamomum variabile Lukman.
  • Cinnamomum wolkensteinii Lukman.
  • Cinnamomum zeylanicum Blume
  • Cinnamomum zollingeri Lukman.
  • Laurus cinnamomum L.[1]

Cinnamomum verum,[2] called true cinnamon tree or Ceylon cinnamon tree, is a small evergreen tree belonging to the family Lauraceae, native to Sri Lanka.[3] The inner bark of several other Cinnamomum species is also used to make cinnamon, but C. verum has a subtler flavor that makes it preferred for certain recipes.


Cinnamomum verum trees are 10–15 metres (30–50 feet) tall. The leaves are ovate-oblong in shape and 7–18 cm (3–7 inches) long. The flowers, which are arranged in panicles, have a greenish color and a distinct odour. The fruit is a purple 1-cm drupe containing a single seed.[4]


The old botanical synonym for the tree, Cinnamomum zeylanicum, is derived from Sri Lanka's former name, Ceylon.[5] Sri Lanka still produces 80–90%[6] of the world's supply of C. verum, which is also cultivated on a commercial scale in the Seychelles and Madagascar.[7]


There are several different cultivars of Cinnamomum verum based on the taste of bark:[8]

  • Type 1 – Sinhala: Pani Kurundu (පැණි කුරුඳු), Pat Kurundu (පත් කුරුඳු), Mapat Kurundu (මාපත් කුරුඳු); Tamil: Ten Lavangapattai (தேன் இலவங்கப்பட்டை), Karamana lavangapattai (காரமான இலவங்கப்பட்டை), Taramana Lavangapattai (தரமான இலவங்கப்பட்டை)
  • Type 2 – Sinhala: Naga Kurundu (නාග කුරුඳු); Tamil: Naka Lavangapattai (நாகா இலவங்கப்பட்டை)
  • Type 3 – Sinhala: Pani Miris Kurundu (පැණි මිරිස් කුරුඳු); Tamil: Juci Milakay Lavangapattai (ஜூசி மிளகாய் இலவங்கப்பட்டை)
  • Type 4 – Sinhala: Weli Kurundu (වැලි කුරුඳු); Tamil: Manal Lavangapattai (மணல் இலவங்கப்பட்டை)
  • Type 5 – Sinhala: Sewala Kurundu (සෙවල කුරුඳු); Tamil: Vettappattatu Lavangapattai (வெட்டப்பட்டது இலவங்கப்பட்டை)
  • Type 6 – Sinhala: Kahata Kurundu (කහට කුරුඳු); Tamil: Manyal Nira Lavangapattai (மஞ்சள் நிற இலவங்கப்பட்டை
  • Type 7 – Sinhala: Peiris Kurundu (පීරිස් කුරුඳු); Tamil: Piris Lavangapattai (பீரிஸ் இலவங்கப்பட்டை)


The trees grow as leafy bushes, usually maxing out about 3 meters (10 ft) in height. They are first harvested at 3 years old, and continue producing well for 40-50 years. Small side branches (1.5-5 cm in diameter) are removed from the trees. The outer bark is removed, and made into mulch. Twigs, leaves & berries (seeds) are crushed and make cinnamon oil, a less valuable byproduct. The inner bark of the branches is loosened by being rubbed with a brass rod, then split with a brass or stainless steel knife, and then peeled off, as intact as possible. Long, full 'quills' of cinnamon are more valuable than broken pieces. These quills are then dried over several days, in the shade, then in darkness. All this work is done by hand by experienced workers; this is the most expensive part of producing cinnamon spice. Finally, the dried bark is cut into sticks or ground into powder for sale to consumers.



  1. ^ "Cinnamomum verum J.Presl — The Plant List".
  2. ^ "NCBI – Cinnamomum verum". National Center for Biotechnology Information. Retrieved 4 October 2016.
  3. ^ "Cinnamon". Encyclopædia Britannica. 2008. (species Cinnamomum zeylanicum), bushy evergreen tree of the laurel family (Lauraceae) native to Bangladesh, Sri Lanka (Ceylon), the neighboring Malabar coast of India, and Myanmar (Burma), and also cultivated in South America and the West Indies for the spice consisting of its dried inner bark. The bark is widely used as a spice due to its distinct odor.
  4. ^ Cinnamomum verum Cinnamon, Ceylon Cinnamon Tree PFAF Plant Database
  5. ^ "In pictures: Sri Lanka's spice of life". BBC News.
  6. ^ "True cinnamon is pricey, but is there an honest difference?". Truly Ceylon Cinnamon. 2018-12-14. Retrieved 2019-04-19.
  7. ^ Iqbal, Mohammed (1993). "International trade in non-wood forest products: An overview". FO: Misc/93/11 – Working Paper. Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations. Retrieved November 12, 2012.
  8. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2017-04-28. Retrieved 2015-10-04.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)

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