Mimusops elengi

Mimusops elengi is a medium-sized evergreen tree found in tropical forests in South Asia, Southeast Asia and northern Australia. English common names include Spanish cherry,[2] medlar,[2] and bullet wood.[3] Its timber is valuable, the fruit is edible, and it is used in traditional medicine. As the trees give thick shade and flowers emit fragrance, it is a prized collection of gardens.[4]

Mimusops elengi
Spanish cherry.jpg
Scientific classification edit
Kingdom: Plantae
Clade: Tracheophytes
Clade: Angiosperms
Clade: Eudicots
Clade: Asterids
Order: Ericales
Family: Sapotaceae
Genus: Mimusops
M. elengi
Binomial name
Mimusops elengi
The ripe fruit has many traditional uses.

Its flower is the provincial flower of Yala Province, Thailand, as well as the city flower of Ampang Jaya, Selangor, Malaysia.[5][6]

Tree descriptionEdit

Flowers in Hyderabad, India
Flowers are made into garlands

Bullet wood is an evergreen tree reaching a height of about 16 m (52 ft). It flowers in April, and fruiting occurs between June and October. The leaves are glossy, dark green, oval-shaped, 5–14 cm (2.0–5.5 in) long, and 2.5–6 cm (0.98–2.36 in) wide. The flowers are cream, hairy, and scented. The fruits are fleshy, range in color between yellow and brown, and contain a large brown seed. The pulp has a yellow color and it is edible. The bark of the tree is thick and appears dark brownish black or grayish black in colour, with striations and a few cracks on the surface. The tree may reach up to a height of 9–18 m (30–59 ft) with about 1 m (3 ft 3 in) in circumference.


The plant is native to South and Southeast Asia, particularly the coastal areas of the Indian subcontinent, Sri Lanka, Vietnam and Myanmar, as well as Northern Australia. It was introduced in China in the 20th century, and it is now cultivated in its south, as well as in Taiwan.[7]

Ayurvedic usesEdit

The bark, flowers, fruits, and seeds of Bakula[8] are used in Ayurvedic medicine in which it is purported to be astringent, cooling, anthelmintic, tonic, and febrifuge. It is mainly used for dental ailments such as bleeding gums, pyorrhea, dental caries, and loose teeth.[8][unreliable source?]

Other usesEdit

  • The flowers are sun dried and used to make floral infusions and as an addition to green tea in Thailand.
  • The edible fruit is softly hairy becoming smooth, ovoid, bright red-orange when ripe.
  • The wood is a luxurious wood that is extremely hard, strong and tough, and rich deep red in color. The heartwood is sharply defined from the sapwood. It works easily and takes a beautiful polish. Density is 1008 kg per cubic meter.


  1. ^ Barstow, M. (2019). "Mimusops elengi". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. 2019: e.T61964765A61964768. doi:10.2305/IUCN.UK.2019-1.RLTS.T61964765A61964768.en. Retrieved 19 November 2021.
  2. ^ a b Bailey, L.H.; Bailey, E.Z.; the staff of the Liberty Hyde Bailey Hortorium. 1976. Hortus third: A concise dictionary of plants cultivated in the United States and Canada. Macmillan, New York.
  3. ^ "Mimusops elengi". Biodiversity India. Retrieved 14 October 2013.
  4. ^ "Maulsari". flowersofindia.com. Retrieved 14 October 2013.
  5. ^ "ประวัติ จังหวัด ยะลา-Yala Province". Archived from the original on 2013-11-09. Retrieved 2013-03-25.
  6. ^ "BUNGA RASMI MPAJ". Portal Rasmi MAJLIS PERBANDARAN AMPANG JAYA. Retrieved 15 November 2019.
  7. ^ 中国热带主要外来树种. ISBN 9787541654701.
  8. ^ a b "Bakula – an Indian plant with interesting properties". Natural Actives. Retrieved 14 October 2013.

Further readingEdit