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Feronia Elephantum,

The pulp of the ripe fruit has an agreeable odor and is edible.

NOM. VULG.—Panoan, Pamunoan, Vis.; Wood-apple, Eng.

USES.—The pulp of the ripe fruit has an agreeable odor and is edible. In India the green fruit is used as an astringent in diarrhoea and dysentery; the ripe fruit is given in diseases of the gums and as a gargle. Mir Muhammad Husain states that the ripe fruit is a refrigerant, astringent, cardiac and general tonic, and is very efficacious in the treatment of salivation and ulcers of the throat, strengthening the gums and operating as an astringent. A sorbet made of the ripe fruit whets the appetite and the pulp is used locally for bites of venomous animals. In the latter case the pulverized bark may be used if the fruit cannot be obtained.

The fruit of Ferona is a substitute for Bael (Ægle Marmelos), and is used as such by the English physicians in the hospitals of India. The tender leaves have an agreeable aroma similar to that of anise and are used internally in decoction as a stomachic and carminative.

The incised trunk exudes a gum which is used in India as a substitute for gum arabic and there is an active trade in this gum in the bazars of Bombay and Calcutta. According to Pereira, it was at one time imported into England from the east of India under the name of gum arabic. It exists in the form of irregular, semitransparent pieces, of a brownish-red color. With water it forms a mucilage as adhesive as gum arabic, and this solution reddens litmus paper. It is dextrogyrous and is precipitated by the neutral acetate of lead and by caustic baryta.

BOTANICAL DESCRIPTION.—Tree 3–4 meters high. Leaves fragrant, opposite, oddpinnate.

Leaflets, 2 pairs, lanceolate, entire, and glabrous. Common petiole flattened above. Flowers terminal, white, racemose, with 2 flattened peduncles.

Calyx inferior, with 5–6 divisions. Corolla, 5–6 petals. Anthers oval. Ovary oblong, 5-lobuled. Style short, caducous. Stigma spindle-shaped. Ovules numerous, compressed, in several series. Fruit pulpy, globose, with woody rind, one compartment and many compressed, oblong seeds.

HABITAT.—Mountains of Angat. Woods of Catugán (Iloilo).

Reference book: The Medicinal Plants of the Philippines

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