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Chukrasia tabularis - A.Juss.

Common Name Chickrassy, Chittagong Wood, Indian Redwood.
Family Meliaceae
USDA hardiness 9-12
Known Hazards None known
Habitats A dominant tree, usually found scattered in the top canopy of lowland evergreen or deciduous forest. It occasionally occurs as a colonizer of bare land, including road cuttings[ 303 ].
Range E. Asia - China, India, Bangladesh, Myanmar, Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia, Laos, Cambodia, Vietnam.
Edibility Rating    (1 of 5)
Other Uses    (4 of 5)
Weed Potential No
Medicinal Rating    (2 of 5)
Care (info)
Tender Moist Soil Full sun
Chukrasia tabularis Chickrassy, Chittagong Wood, Indian Redwood.

Chukrasia tabularis Chickrassy, Chittagong Wood, Indian Redwood.


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Chickrassy (Chukrasia tabularis) is a medium to large deciduous or evergreen tree of 30 m high, with trunk diameter of up to 120 cm that may be branchless for up to 25 m. It has convex buttresses up to 150 cm tall. The bark is coarsely cracked and dark brown in colour. The leaves are narrowly oval and taper to the tip. The flowers are pale red and are located in branched clusters. The fruits are yellowish grey and wrinkles as it mature. The tree is used widely as ornamental, plantation tree, or as pioneer species. It is also used for medicinal purposes. In particular, bark extract is used in the treatment of diarrhoea and as febrifuge. Leaf extract, on the other hand, shows antimalarial, antibacterial, and antifungal activities attributed to the leaf?s essential oil. Further, the trunk yields gum while flowers contain a red and yellow dye. The wood is highly valued and used for making cabinets, doors, windows, light flooring, carving, planks, posts, etc.

Physical Characteristics

 icon of manicon of lolypop
Chukrasia tabularis is a deciduous Tree growing to 30 m (98ft) by 30 m (98ft) at a medium rate.
See above for USDA hardiness. It is hardy to UK zone 10.
Suitable for: light (sandy) and medium (loamy) soils and prefers well-drained soil. Suitable pH: mildly acid, neutral and basic (mildly alkaline) soils and can grow in very acid and very alkaline soils.
It cannot grow in the shade. It prefers moist soil. The plant can tolerates strong winds but not maritime exposure.

UK Hardiness Map US Hardiness Map


Chickrassia nimmonii Graham ex Wight Chickrassia nimmonii J.Graham ex Wight Chickrassia tabularis Wi

Plant Habitats

Edible Uses

Edible Parts: Oil
Edible Uses: Gum  Oil

The young fruit are possibly edible.

References   More on Edible Uses

Medicinal Uses

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Antibacterial  Antidiarrhoeal  Antifungal  Astringent  Febrifuge  Malaria

An extract of the bark has powerful astringent properties and has been used to treat diarrhoea and as a febrifuge[ 299 , 303 ]. A leaf extract has been reported to exhibit considerable antimalarial activity, as well as antibacterial and antifungal activities; the essential oil present in the leaf is responsible for these activities[ 299 ]. The oil consists of oxygenated monoterpenes (42.8%, mainly carvacrol, thymol and borneol), phenyl propanoids (25.2%, mainly (E)-methyl isoeugenol and myristicin) and smaller amounts of sesquiterpene hydrocarbons, monoterpene hydrocarbons and oxygenated sesquiterpenes[ 299 ]. Widely used in Ayurveda as an important medicinal plant.

References   More on Medicinal Uses

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Other Uses

Containers  Dye  Essential  Fuel  Furniture  Gum  Insecticide  Oil  Pioneer  Tannin  Wood

Other uses rating: High (4/5). Agroforestry Uses: The tree is regarded as a pioneer species and is common in areas where shifting cultivation used to be practised[ 303 ]. The straight bole and self-pruning ability make it a suitable tree for growing in combination with crops, such as banana, Citrus spp., and guava[ 303 ]. It is grown to provide shade in coffee plantations in India[ 299 ]. Its coppicing and pollarding ability make it particularly suitable for home gardens[ 303 ]. Other Uses A yellow, transparent gum exudes from the trunk and is marketed in admixture with other gums[ 303 ]. The flowers contain a red and a yellow dye[ 303 ]. The young leaves and bark contain 22% and 15% of tannin respectively[ 303 ]. An extract from the twigs has proved an efficacious antifeedant against Pieris rapae in southern China[ 451 ]. Root extracts showed antifeedant activity against Spodoptera insects, with phragmalin limonoids (tabulalin and tabulalides A - E) as the active compounds[ 299 ]. The seeds contain some 50% oil but how this is utilized is unrecorded[ 451 ]. The heartwood is pale reddish-brown, yellowish-red to red, darkening to dark yellowish-brown, reddish-brown to medium dark brown on exposure, sharply differentiated from the yellowish-white, pale yellowish-brown, pinkish-brown or greyish-brown sapwood; dark streaks may be rather prominent. The density is 625-800 kg/cubic m at 15% mc. The grain is interlocked and sometimes wavy, producing a rose figure; texture moderately fine but uneven. Freshly cut wood has a fragrant odour, but dried wood has no characteristic odour or taste[ 299 , 303 ]. The wood is moderately hard, it is considered non-durable to moderately durable under exposed conditions - the resistance to termite attack varies from good to poor[ 299 ]. Planed surfaces have a high lustrous satiny sheen[ 303 ]. The timber is highly prized for high-grade cabinetwork, decorative panelling, interior joinery such as doors, windows and light flooring, and for carving, toys and turnery. It is also used for railway sleepers, ship and boat building, furniture, musical instruments (including pianos), packing cases, sporting goods, lorry bodies, mallet heads, anvil blocks, brush wares, drawing equipment, rifle butts, veneer and pulp. In India, the timber is also used for light to medium-heavy construction work, such as for posts, beams, scantlings and planks[ 303 ]. The wood peels well and gives exceedingly fine veneer. It is suitable for commercial and moisture proof plywood[ 303 ]. The wood can also be used as a fuel[ 303 ].

Special Uses

Coppice  Food Forest

References   More on Other Uses

Cultivation details

Chickrassy is a plant of the lowland tropics, usually found in an altitude range of 300 - 800 metres[ 303 ]. It succeeds in areas where the mean annual temperature is in the range 20 - 25°c with an absolute minimum of 5 - 10°c[ 325 ]. It grows best in areas where the mean annual rainfall is 1,400 - 4,000mm - it can tolerate as little as 850mm rainfall, but growth is then rather slow, in fact it does not achieve its full potential below 2,000mm rainfall[ 325 ]. Prefers a sunny position, tolerating light shade[ 418 ]. Avoids heavy and wet soils[ 303 ]. It is usually found on well-drained soil in the plains and on hills[ 303 ]. Plants are often found on limestone in the wild[ 303 ]. Prefers a pH in the range 5.5 - 6.5, tolerating 5 - 7[ 418 ]. Plants are generally wind-tolerant[ 404 ]. The growth of seedlings is moderately fast over the first few years with plants reaching a height of 1.2 - 2.1 metres after two years; 2.8 - 3.4 metres after 3 years; 5.5 metres tall after 6 years[ 303 ]. The tree coppices particularly well[ 303 ].

References   Carbon Farming Information and Carbon Sequestration Information

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Plant Propagation

Seed requires no pre-treatment and is sown with overhead shade in light porous soil. Germination is fair: in Malaysia 35% of the seeds sown germinated in 1 - 2.5 weeks, in India 80-90% in 1 - 4 weeks[ 303 ]. Where seed is plentiful, the best method is broadcast sowing in strips 0.6 m wide and 1.8 m apart. Best results have been obtained by raising seedlings in well-drained boxes and pots before transplanting[ 303 ]. Seedlings are pricked out and transplanted to the nursery beds when about 1 month old and 6 - 8 cm high[ 303 ]. Fresh seed retains its viability for a relatively short period, about 3 months[ 303 ]. Air-layering[ 303 ].

Other Names

If available other names are mentioned here

Chickrassy (Chukrasia tabularis). Other common names of Chukrasia tabularis are Bastard cedar, White cedar, East-Indian mahogany, Indian redwood, Burma almond wood, and Chittagong wood. Other Names: Bastard cedar, White cedar, Chickrassy, Chittagong Wood, East-Indian mahogany, Indian Redwood, Burmese Almondwood. Hindi - Chikrasi. Manipuri - Taimareng. Telugu - Kondavepa. Tamil - Malei veppu. Kannada - Kalgarike. Malayalam - Suvannakil. Bengali - Chikrassi. Assamese - Boga-poma. Sinhala - Hulan hik / Hirikita.

Native to Bangladesh, Cambodia, China, India, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Sri Lanka, Thailand, and Vietnam. Introduced to many western countries such as Cameroon, Costa Rica, Nigeria, Puerto Rico, South Africa, and United States.

Weed Potential

Right plant wrong place. We are currently updating this section. Please note that a plant may be invasive in one area but may not in your area so it’s worth checking.

None Known

Conservation Status

IUCN Red List of Threatened Plants Status : Chukrasia tabularis: Status: Lower Risk/least concern

Related Plants
Latin NameCommon NameHabitHeightHardinessGrowthSoilShadeMoistureEdibleMedicinalOther

Growth: S = slow M = medium F = fast. Soil: L = light (sandy) M = medium H = heavy (clay). pH: A = acid N = neutral B = basic (alkaline). Shade: F = full shade S = semi-shade N = no shade. Moisture: D = dry M = Moist We = wet Wa = water.


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Botanical References

Links / References

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A special thanks to Ken Fern for some of the information used on this page.

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