Diospyros blancoi (PROSEA Timbers)

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Plant Resources of South-East Asia
List of species

Diospyros blancoi A.DC.

Protologue: Prodr. 8: 237 (1844).


Diospyros discolor Willd. (1806), nom. illeg., Diospyros philippensis (Desr.) Guerke (1891).

Vernacular names

  • Mabolo, velvet apple, butter fruit (En). Pommier velours (Fr)
  • Indonesia: buah mentega (Malay, Sumatra), bisbul, mabolo (Sundanese)
  • Malaysia: buah lemah, buah sagalat, kayu mantega (Peninsular)
  • Philippines: mabolo, kamagong (general), talang (Tagalog).


The Philippines and Taiwan; cultivated in Peninsular Malaysia, Sumatra and Java, and in other tropical countries.


The wood is used as streaked ebony, especially for carvings and special furniture. The tree is often planted for its rather sweet but dry edible fruits, and also as a roadside tree.


A small to medium-sized tree up to 15(-32) m tall, bole branchless for up to 10 m, generally straight and fluted, up to 100 cm in diameter; leaves oblong to elliptical-oblong, 8-30 cm × 2.5-12 cm, base usually rounded or slightly cordate, apex pointed, silvery hairy below, tertiary venation reticulate, distinct; male flowers in 3-7-flowered cymes, 4-merous, stamens 24-30; female flowers solitary, 4-5-merous, calyx lobes overlapping, appressed sericeous outside, corolla divided to halfway, staminodes 4-5 or 8-10, ovary with 4-5 styles and 8 or 10 uni-ovulate locules; fruit globose or depressed globose, 7-10 cm in diameter (sometimes larger in fruit trees), velvety. D. blancoi is very common and widespread in the Philippines and is found in both primary and secondary forest, up to 800 m altitude. The density of the wood is about 1090 kg/m3at 15% moisture content.

Selected sources

42, 78, 125, 216, 234, 248, 374, 527, 595, 673, 690, 705.