Syzygium polycephalum (PROSEA)

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Plant Resources of South-East Asia
List of species

Syzygium polycephalum (Miq.) Merr. & Perry

Family: Myrtaceae


  • Eugenia polycephala Miq.

Vernacular names

  • Indonesia: gowok, kupa, dompjong (Java).


Indonesia (Java, Kalimantan), wild and cultivated.


Fruits are eaten raw or candied; they have an agreeable sour taste, often made into jelly. Young shoots are eaten as a vegetable. The wood is used for house construction.


  • Tree, 8-20 m tall, stem diameter up to 50 cm.
  • Leaves oblong, 17-25 cm × 6-7 cm.
  • Fruit a depressed globose berry, 2-3 cm diameter, growing in clusters, crowned by the calyx limb, dark violet, shiny.

In secondary forests, between 200-1800 m altitude, but often cultivated in home gardens as a fruit tree. Propagation by seed and by grafting. Planting distance 14 m × 14 m. Flowering in August, fruiting in September-October.

Selected sources

  • Backer, C.A. & Bakhuizen van den Brink, R.C., 1963-1968. Flora of Java. 3 Volumes. Noordhoff, Groningen, the Netherlands.
  • Heyne, K., 1927. De nuttige planten van Nederlandsch Indië [The useful plants of the Dutch East Indies]. 2nd ed. 3 Volumes. Departement van Landbouw, Nijverheid en Handel in Nederlandsch Indië. 1953 pp.
  • Koorders, S.H. & Valeton, Th., 1894 1914. Bijdrage tot de kennis der boomsoorten van Java [Contribution to the knowledge of tree species of Java]. 13 Volumes. G. Kolff & Co., Batavia.
  • Ochse, J.J., 1927. Indische vruchten [Indonesian fruits]. Volkslectuur, Weltevreden. 330 pp.
  • Ochse, J.J. & Bakhuizen van den Brink, R.C., 1980. Vegetables of the Dutch East Indies. 2nd ed. Asher & Co, Amsterdam. 1016 pp.


P.C.M. Jansen, J. Jukema, L.P.A. Oyen, T.G. van Lingen