BINTAWA
(
Artocarpus anisophyllus)
 

A tree of bintawa

 
 

Family: Moraceae

Synonym: Artocarpus klidang, Artocarpus superba

Other names: Entawak, Mentawa

Bintawa is a fruit from South East Asia.  It is native to Peninsular Malaysia, Sumatra, Borneo and intervening islands and grows in lowland forests.  It is basically a fruit for tropical climates.

          Bintawa is found growing wild.  The trees are sometimes planted too but that is not a common practice.

Description:

 A medium-sized tree growing upto 30 m tall; bole dark grey, smooth to dippled bark having spreading buttresses to 2.5 m tall.

 

Foliage and a fruit of bintawa
 

           Leaves pinnately compound, 3090 cm long and with leaflets of two different sizes; in total, there are 812 pairs of leaflets, with the small leaflets alternately arranged with the larger ones; leaf glabrous and the leaflets have unequal base.

           Flowers 2 mm wide, yellowish, placed within an elongate, compressed, fused inflorescence.

           Fruit Fruits globose, 110 mm in diameter, yellowish-brown, syncarp spiny, spines thick and blunt, flesh yellow orange.

           Seeds many, edible.

Utilization:

The fruits are harvested from the trees when still firm and then kept at room temperature where it ripens in a few days. They taste like baked pumpkins and are popularly eaten fresh by local people.  The seeds are also edible.

 

Ripe fruits of bintawa

 

          The wood is put to many uses. Bark is locally used as rope for backpacks. The leaves are burned, and mixed with coconut oil used against boils and itch.

Cultivation:

As already stated, bintawa fruits are mostly collected from wild only.  If trees are to be planted, then these are raised from seed only.

 

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