Crescentia cujete

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Crescentia cujete
2014.09-421-196ap calabash tree,bowl Finkoloni,N'Goutjina Cmn.(Koutiala Crc.,Sikasso Rgn),ML fri05sep2014-1016h.jpg
Fruiting branches, and showing bowl made of the hard rind of a fruit of that tree (Koutiala District, Mali, September 2014)
Scientific classification
C. cujete
Binomial name
Crescentia cujete
Crescentia cujete, dry fruit and seeds - MHNT

Crescentia cujete, commonly known as the Calabash Tree, is species of flowering plant that is native to Central, South America, West Africa and South Africa. It is the national tree of St. Lucia. It is a dicotyledonous plant with simple leaves, which are alternate or in fascicles (clusters) on short shoots.[1] It is naturalized in India.[2]

It is also known as Calabacero (Spain), Cuité (Brazil) Totumo (Panama, Colombia, Venezuela and Peru), Tutumo (Bolivia), Taparo (Venezuela), Mate (Ecuador), Huinga (Peru), Pate (Peru), Cuyabra (Colombia), Jícaro (Mexico, Nicaragua), Morro (Guatemala), Güira (Cuba), Cujete (Spain, Philippines), Miracle Fruit (Philippines), Kalbas (Dominica and St. Lucia), Higuera (Puerto Rico), Rum tree (Sri Lanka) Ugba, Duma and Igba (Nigeria).

The fruit, called Jícara, Bule, Tecomate, Guaje, Morro or Huacal in Mexico, is used to make small vessels for serving or drinking. In Western and Southern Africa it is also used for decoration and musical instruments.

The tree shares its common name with that of the vine calabash, or bottle gourd, Lagenaria siceraria).


  1. ^ GENTRY, A.H. 1996. A field guide to the families and genera of woody plants of northwest South America (Columbia, Ecuador, Peru), with supplementary notes on herbaceous taxa. University of Chicago Press. p. 265.
  2. ^ Pharmacographia Indica page 40

External links[edit]

  • Media related to Crescentia cujete at Wikimedia Commons
  • Plant of the Week 31 January 2005: Calabash Tree (Crescentia cujete)
  • Philippine Medicinal Plants: Cujete
  • "Crescentia cujete". Plants for a Future.
  • {West Africa} {South Africa}