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Platonia insignis - Mart.

Common Name Bakuri, Bacuri
Family Clusiaceae
USDA hardiness 10-12
Known Hazards None known
Habitats Seasonally flooded, humid forests[336 , 416 ]. Found mainly in open, transitional vegetation, being rare in the dense forest[419 ].
Range S. America - Paraguay, Brazil, Colombia, Guyana, Surinam.
Edibility Rating    (4 of 5)
Other Uses    (3 of 5)
Weed Potential Yes
Medicinal Rating    (2 of 5)
Care (info)
Tender Moist Soil Wet Soil Full sun
Platonia insignis Bakuri, Bacuri

Platonia insignis Bakuri, Bacuri
Hellen Perrone wikimedia.org


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Commonly known as Bakuri, Platonia insignis, is tropical large tree growing about 25-40 m in height and 1.5 m across. It has a straight trunk, opposite branches, shiny leaves, and large pink flowers. The fruit of Bakuri is yellow when ripe, round, and comprised of thick rind and white flesh. The fruit can either be consumed raw or made into desserts. Bark decoction is used against diarrhea. Seed oil, when combined with sweet almond oil, is used in the treatment of eczema and herpes. It is also utilized in the soap and candles production. The bark yields fiber and black resin - the fiber is made into ropes while the resin is used as sealant in boats. Bakuri wood is heavy, elastic, moderately hard to hard, moderately strong, and resistant to attacks of dry-wood borers and termites.

Physical Characteristics

 icon of manicon of cone
Platonia insignis is an evergreen Tree growing to 25 m (82ft) by 20 m (65ft) at a fast rate.
See above for USDA hardiness. It is hardy to UK zone 10.
Suitable for: light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils. Suitable pH: mildly acid, neutral and basic (mildly alkaline) soils. It cannot grow in the shade. It prefers moist or wet soil.

UK Hardiness Map US Hardiness Map


Aristoclesia esculenta (Arruda) Stuntz Moronobea esculenta Arruda Platonia esculenta (Arruda) Oken

Plant Habitats

Edible Uses

Edible Parts: Fruit  Oil
Edible Uses: Oil

Fruit - raw or cooked to make sherbet, ice cream, marmalade or jelly[336 ]. The white, pithy pulp has a pleasant odour and an agreeable, subacid flavour[336 ]. The fruit is yellow when ripe, nearly round or ovoid, 75 - 125mm wide, weighing up to 900 g[336 ]. The rind is yellow, hard, fleshy on the inside, 1 - 2 cm thick, and contains gummy, yellow, resinous latex[336 ]. The infertile seed compartments are filled with pulp called 'filho 'which is the part preferred[336 ]. The oil is unlikely to be edible.

References   More on Edible Uses

Medicinal Uses

Plants For A Future can not take any responsibility for any adverse effects from the use of plants. Always seek advice from a professional before using a plant medicinally.
Antidermatosic  Antidiarrhoeal  Astringent  Eczema

The seeds contain 6 to 11% of an oil that is mixed with sweet almond oil and used to treat eczema and herpes[336 ]. The bark is astringent. A decoction is used to treat diarrhoea[348 ].

References   More on Medicinal Uses

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Other Uses

Fibre  Furniture  Lighting  Oil  Resin  Soap making  String  Waterproofing  Wood

Other Uses: A non-drying oil, known as 'bakuri oil', is obtained from the seed[46 ]. It is used for the manufacture of candles and soap[46 ]. A fibre obtained from the bark is used for cordage[378 ]. A black, viscous resin obtained from the bark is used for caulking boats[378 ]. The heartwood is dull-yellow to orange-brown with many fine, dark, often black streaks; it is clearly demarcated from the 3 - 9cm wide band of yellowish-white sapwood. The texture is coarse to medium; the grain generally straight but at times irregular; the lustre is low. The wood is heavy; moderately hard to hard; moderately strong; elastic; durable in the soil and resistant to dry-wood borers and termites. It seasons somewhat slowly, with a high risk of checking and distortion; once dry it is poorly stable in service. It has a fairly high blunting effect, stellite-tipped and tungsten carbide tools are recommended; although hard, it is easy to work with both hand and power tools; nailing and screwing are good, but require pre-boring; gluing is correct for interior purposes only; it polishes well. It is valued for construction, high class furniture, flooring, ship-building and general carpentry[46 , 336 , 378 , 848 ].

Special Uses

Food Forest

References   More on Other Uses

Cultivation details

A plant of the moist, lowland tropics[336 ]. Succeeds in a sunny position[419 ]. Plants are tolerant of various soil conditions, including poor drainage, but dislike dry soils[335 , 419 ]. In some areas within its native range this tree is viewed as a weed because it proliferates from fallen seeds and, if felled, produces abundant suckers from the roots[336 ]. A rather fast-growing tree[419 ]. Bloom Color: Pink.

References   Carbon Farming Information and Carbon Sequestration Information

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Plant Propagation

Seed - best sown as soon as it is ripe in a partially shaded position in individual containers. A high germination rate can usually be expected, with the seed sprouting within 20 - 40 days[419 ]. The seed has a very short viability of less than 30 days in the wild[419 ].

Other Names

If available other names are mentioned here

Bacupari, Bacuri, Bacuri assu, Bacuri do para, Bacury, Geelhart, Goherica, Ko, Maniballi, Packoeri, Pacuri, Pakoeri, Pakouri, Pakuri, Parcouri, Pacoury-uva, bacuripari

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Found In

Countries where the plant has been found are listed here if the information is available

Guyana; Suriname; French Guiana; Venezuela, Bolivarian Republic of; Brazil, Amazon, Colombia, Guiana, Guyana, Paraguay, South America, Suriname.

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.

In some areas within its native range this tree is viewed as a weed because it proliferates from fallen seeds and, if felled, produces abundant suckers from the roots[336 ]

Conservation Status

IUCN Red List of Threatened Plants Status : This taxon has not yet been assessed

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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