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Family Rosaceae
Photinia serratifolia (Desf.) Kalkman
Shi nan

Scientific names Common names
Crataegus serratifolia Desf. Sugsuggat (Igorot)
Photinia serratifolia (Desf.) Kalkman Chinese hawthorn (Engl.)
Pyrus serratifolia (Desf.) M.F.Fay & Christenh. Chinese photinia (Engl.)
Accepted infraspecifics Oriental photinia (Engl.)
Photinia serratifolia var. ardisiifolia (Hayata) H.Ohashi Taiwanese photinia (Engl.)
Photinia serratifolia var. daphniphylloides (Hayata) L.T.Lu  
Photinia serratifolia var. lasiopetala (Hayata) L.Ohashi  
Photinia serratifolia var.serratifolia  
Photinia serratifolia is an accepted species. KEW: Plants of the World Online
Note: Many articles list Photinia serrulata as a synonym of Photinia serratifolia.  Plants of the World Online lists Photinia serrulata Lindl. as a synonym of Photinia glabra, and Photinia serrulata f. ardisiifolia (Hayata) H.L.Li as a synonym of Photinia serratifolia var. ardisiifolia.

Other vernacular names
CHINESE: Shi nan.

Gen info
- Photinia is a genus of about 30 species of small trees and large shrubs. The taxonomy has varied greatly, sometimes including the genera Heteromeles, Stranvaesia and Aronia.
- Etymol
ogy: The genus name Photinia derives from the Greek word photeinos, meaning shiny, referring to the often glossy leaves. The species epithet serratifolia derives from Latin serrulam meaning 'small saw' and folia meaning 'leaf', referring to the serrated leaf margins.
- The use of Photinia as common name is a source of confusion, as the name is commonly applied to other genera i.e., Heteromeles, Lycium, Schinus, and Ruscus. The name is also use for several species of trees in Mexico and Central America, which were formerly included in the genus Photinia. (2)
- It is the largest and heaviest-blooming of all photinias.

Scadoxus m is a shrubs or tree, evergreen, 4–6(–12) m tall. Branchlets brown or reddish brown when young, brownish gray when old, glabrous; buds ovoid, 4–7 mm, apex acute to shortly acuminate; scales several, brown. Petiole 2–4 cm, pubescent when young, glabrescent; leaf blade narrowly elliptic, narrowly obovate, or obovate-elliptic, (6–)9–22 × 3–6.5 cm, leathery, veins 20–30 pairs, midvein raised abaxially and impressed adaxially, abaxially long pubescent along veins when young, both surfaces glabrous when mature, adaxially lustrous, base rounded or broadly cuneate, margin sparsely or inconspicuously toothed or entire, apex acuminate. Compound corymbs terminal, 8–12 × 10–16 cm; rachis and pedicels glabrous, villous, or tomentose. Pedicel 3–5 mm. Flowers 6–8 mm in diam. Hypanthium cupular, 1–1.5 mm, abaxially glabrous. Sepals broadly triangular, 1–1.5 mm, apex acute or obtuse. Petals white, suborbicular, 3–4 mm in diam., glabrous or villous. Stamens 20, outer ones longer than inner ones. Ovary pilose apically; styles 2, sometimes 3, connate at base, not exceeding stamens; stigma capitate. Fruit red when immature, brownish purple when mature, globose, 5–6 mm in diam., with 1 seed; seeds brownish, ovoid, 2–2.5 mm, smooth. (Flora of China) (3)

- Native to the Philippines.
- Also native to China, Nansei-shoto, Taiwan.
- In primary and secondary forests, at sea level to an altitude of 2,500 m.

- Fruits yielded steroids, flavonoids, saponins, polyphenols, and tannins, with absence of alkaloids and anthraquinones.

- Considered febrifuge diuretic, stimulant, tonic, aphrodisiac.
- Flowers are described by some as showy and fragrant; others as malodorous.
- Leaves reported as toxic because of content of cyanogenic glycosides. (No studies found)
- Studies have suggested antioxidant, cytotoxic, anticancer properties.

Parts used
Wood, oil.


- Fruits are edible.

- No recorded folkloric medicinal use in the Philippines.
- Tincture of wood used as tonic and anodyne.
- Wood: Hard and heavy; used for making furniture and small implements.

Antioxidant / Cytotoxicity / Anticancer / Leaf Essential Oil:
Hydrodistillation and GC and GC-MS study of leaves for essential oil yielded 71 components. Main constituents were 10-epi-γ-eudesmol (12.72%), pinene (6.85%), sabinene (5.93%), α-humulene (5.87%) and α-thujene (5.47%). The oil exhibited antioxidant by DPPH assay. EO was found active against three human tumor cell lines with low IC50s: HeLa 0.0427 µl/ml, A-549 0.0219 µl/ml, and Bel-7402 o.o301 µl/ml. (3)


February 2023

                                                 PHOTOS / ILLUSTRATIONS
IMAGE SOURCE: Photograph: Photinia serratifolia - flower and leaf detail / © Ettore Balocchi / CC by 2.0 / non-commercial use / click on image to go to source page / North Carolina EXTENSION GARDENER Plant Toolbox
OTHER IMAGE SOURCE: Photograph: Photinia serratifolia - leaves and flowers / © KENPEI / CC BY-SA 3.0 / non-commercial use / click on image to go to source page / North Carolina EXTENSION GARDENER Plant Toolbox
OTHER IMAGE SOURCE: Photograph: Photinia serratifolia - leaves and flowers / © Rebekah D Wallace / University of Georgia, Bugwood Org / CC BY-NC 3.0 / non-commercial use / click on image to go to source page / Forestry Images

Additional Sources and Suggested Readings
Photinia serratifolia / KEW: Plants of the World Online
Photinia / Wikipedia

Chemical composition, cytotoxic and antioxidant activity of the leaf essential oil of Photinia serrulata / Jie Hou, Tao Sun, Jun Hu, Shuangyang Chen / Food Chemistry, 2006; 103(2): pp 355-358 /
DOI: 10.1016/j.foodchem.2006.07.060
Phytochemical Screening and Antioxidant Activity of Edible Wild Fruits in Benguet, Cordillera Administrative Region, Philippines / Racquel Barcelo / Electronic Journal of Biology, 2015; 11(3): pp 80-89 / ISSN: 1860-3122

DOI: It is not uncommon for links on studies/sources to change. Copying and pasting the information on the search window or using the DOI (if available) will often redirect to the new link page. (Citing and Using a (DOI) Digital Object Identifier)

                                                            List of Understudied Philippine Medicinal Plants

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