Xanthostemon verdugonianus

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Xanthostemon verdugonianus
Xanthostemon verdugonianus Blanco2.300-cropped.jpg
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
(unranked): Rosids
Order: Myrtales
Family: Myrtaceae
Genus: Xanthostemon
Species: X. verdugonianus
Binomial name
Xanthostemon verdugonianus
Naves

Xanthostemon verdugonianus is a species of plant in the Myrtaceae family. It is endemic to the Philippines. It is threatened by habitat loss.

Characteristics[edit]

Magkono, scientifically called Xanthostemon verdugonianus Naves, is known to be the hardest Philippine hardwood species. Cutting a 70-cm thick tree with axes normally requires three hours, but cutting a Magkono tree with the same diameter usually takes two to four days. Diamond-point saws have been used exclusively but a great volume of water is needed to counter overheating.

Because of its inherent hardness and high density, Magkono has long been recognized as a substitute for the world-famous Lignum vitae (Guaicum officinale L.). Magkono is an excellent material for the bearing or stern bushing of a steamship’s propeller shaft. Its other uses are as rollers, shears, saw guide blocks, tool handles, novelties, poles and piles for wharves and bridges, and posts for houses.

Magkono is a medium-sized-tree reaching a diameter of 50 cm or more with a very irregular, fluted and bent bole frequently with epidermic branches.

Leaves are simple, relatively thick, alternate, obovate, 8–12 cm long and 3–5 cm wide. Its red inflorescence terminates in a branch. The fruit is dehiscent and has 2-3 lobes that split into 2-3 sections when ripe and contain tiny half-moon shaped seeds.

The species is endemic to the Philippines and is known to have a very limited habitat. It is indigenous only within the so-called ‘Magkono Triangle’ area, consisting of the Dinagat Island in Surigao, the Homonhon Island in Samar, Babatngon, Leyte, and in Palawan.

Status: Rare and Endangered

Sources[edit]

[1]