(Garcinia binucao)

A tree of binucao

Family: Clusiaceae

Other names: Batuan

Binucao is a fruit from South East Asia.  This is most abundant in low altitude forests in Philippines and Vietnam.  

            Biucao is a sour fruit and is therefore mostly used as a souring agent in many local food recipes.


An evergreen tree, upto 25 m tall, bole about 40 cm in diameter.

            Leaves obovate oblong, , 5-12 cm x 4-7 cm.

Binucao fruits and foliage

            Flowers unisexual, reddish to creamy white.

            Fruit a subglobose berry, about 4 cm in diameter, pulp juicy.

            Seeds numerous.


Binucao fruits are sour.  So these cannot be eaten as such.  So these are used as a souring agent while cooking fish and other foods.

Binucao fruits

            The young leaves of binucao trees also have a sout taste.  So these are also used as a souring agent if the fruits are not available.


Binucao fruits are collected from the wild only as it is still not cultivated.  The population of these wild trees is declining fast as the trees are logged for shifting cultivation.  So there is a great need for saving this species from extinction by planting trees. 

Cut fruit of binucao

            New trees can be raised from seed.  This tree is dioecious and it is not possible to determine the sex of trees visually at the time of planting.  So to be sure about the sex of tree at the time of planting, it is better to multiply  plants by grafting as the budwood taken from a female tree, will certainly grow into a female tree.

            Bincau has also been tried at some places as a rootstock for mangosteen.