We bring you another plant idea courtesy of the Palm Centre.
Cinnamomum: This genus of Lauraceae family, consists of around 250 species of evergreen trees from tropical and subtropical Asia and Australia with smooth, strongly veined leaves.
Highly aromatic compounds are present in the leaves, twigs and bark of all species. Most species require tropical or subtropical conditions, with fairly high rainfall, only Cinnamomum camphora is adaptable to warm-temperate climates.
Camphor Tree is a large evergreen tree that grows up to 20–30 meters tall. Cinnamomum camphora is native to Japan, China, Taiwan, Vietnam, Korea, where it is also cultivated for camphor and timber production. Invasive in Australia, Southern USA, Caribbean Islands, Southern Africa and Tanzania, Ghana, Vietnam and Hawaii. Introduced but not invasive in Southern Europe, Madagascar, Canary and Madeira Islands.
The leaves have a glossy, waxy appearance and smell of camphor when crushed. A quick and easy method of identifying camphor is by crushing the leaves or peeling a twig or bark. This will release oils and the scent of camphor.
Camphor is an evergreen tree with oval to elliptical leaves, arranged alternately on the stem. Slender twigs are initially green but change to reddish brown. In spring it produces bright green foliage (new emerging ones are red in colour) with masses of small white flowers. It produces clusters of black berry-like fruit around one centimetre in diameter. It has a pale bark that is very rough and fissured vertically.
Camphora oil was used medicinally and was also an important ingredient in the production of smokeless gunpowder.
Cinnamomum camphora was introduced to Australia in 1822 as an ornamental tree for use in gardens and public parks. It has been declared a noxious weed in many parts of Queensland and New South Wales. Its massive and spreading root systems disrupt urban drainage and sewerage systems and degrade river banks.
It’s leaves have a very high carbon content, which damages water quality and freshwater fish habitats when they fall into streams and rivers. The camphor content of the leaf litter helps prevent other plants from germinating successfully. The seeds are attractive to birds and pass intact through the digestive system, ensuring rapid distribution
Propagate by seed. USDA Hardiness Zone 9B to 11. Camphor trees grow in full sun to partial shade. They tolerate clay, loam, sand, slightly alkaline to acidic soils, and drought. It can take moderate frost, without suffering. We have seen some, in Yalova and İstanbul.
In landscaping terms, they can be planted singly or in groups as shade trees. Large trees are very similar to ficus trees, but superior to them as they can be grown in colder climates. They also can be planted as avenue trees in both sides of the streets.
Camphor is a white crystalline substance, obtained from the tree Cinnamomum camphora. Camphor has been used for many centuries as a culinary spice, a component of incense, and as a medicine. Camphor is also an insect repellent and a flea-killing substance. Today, Camphor is widely used in cooking (mainly for dessert dishes) in India. It is widely available at Indian grocery stores and is labelled as “Edible Camphor”.
The resin or gum of karpura that is, the deposits in the oil cells is used for the medicinal purpose. It is useful both, internally as well as externally. Externally, the karpura oil is used for massage in rheumatic disorders, arthritis, myalgia. The swab dipped in its oil, is placed topically, to relieve the dental pain. Karpura is used in many market preparations of various balms, dental and ophthalmic preparations. Internally, karpura is used in various diseases. As it is diaphoretic, emollient, thermogenic, skin and cardiac stimulant, antiseptic, calmative, expectorant and aphrodisiac, it is used in vast range of diseases, in small quantities.
The Palm Centre, Koycegeiz
For a wide range of special plants visit the areas best nursery, The Palm Centre at Köyceğiz.
It is open daily between 1st June – 31st October but you can visit at any other time by appointment.
Access to plant sales is free but a fee is payable to look around the extensive nursery.
Just ring or email (English is spoken):
Tel : +90 252 262 28 92
Fax : +90 252 262 51 61