Cananga odorata


Family: Belongs to the Annonaceae family, which includes the Sugar Apple (Annona squamosa), soursop (Annona muricata) and the Cashima or Custard Apple (Annona reticulata).

Description: Large, quick-growing, soft-wooded tree, 18-25 m tall (60-80 ft); large greenish-yellow, strongly scented flowers yielding Ylang Ylang oil; flowers have one whorl of persistent 3-segmented sepals and two whorls of petals each with three segments; sepals are small compared to the much larger petals in top two whorls; pistils remain distinct, each developing into berry-like ovoid fruit with numerous seeds, each flower giving rise to a cluster of these berries which turn black when ripe; mature trees flower and fruit almost continuously.

Natural Habitat: Favors moist valleys to 800 m in tropics (2600 ft); readily propagated by seed, more difficult by cuttings.

Origin and Distribution: Native to Tropical Asia, especially Indonesia and Phillipines.

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