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Family Fabaceae / Leguminosae
Sindora supa Merr.

Scientific names Common names
Sindora supa Merr. Balayong (Tayabas)
Sindora wallichii Fern.-Vill. Manopo (Bik., Tag.)
Sindora wallichii "sensu S.Vidal, non Benth." Paina (Bik.)
  Pania (Tag.)
  Parina (Bik.)
  Supa (Tag., Bik.)
  Yakal-dilau (Tayabas)
  Kerosene tree (Engl.)
Sindora supa Merr. is an accepted name. The Plant List

Supa is a is a deciduous, unarmed tree reaching a height of 20 to 30 meters. The bole is straight, regular, and without buttresses. Leaves are pinnate, about 15 centimeters long, with three pairs of leaflets which are glabrous, coriaceous, elliptic, 3.5 to 9 centimeters long and 2.5 to 5 centimeters wide. Panicles are terminal or axillary, 10 to 15 centimeters long. Pods are broadly ovate, about 4 centimeters long and 6 centimeters wide, rounded at the base, somewhat beaked at the apex, evenly provided with spinelike thorns. Seeds are 1-3, black, shiny, with a large and fleshy aril.

- Native to the Philippines.
- Found in forests at low and medium altitudes in Quezon, Nueva Ecija, Camarines and Albay provinces in Luzon; and in Mindoro.

- Classified by the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species as "vulnerable." (5)

- Freshly cut tree yields about 10 liters of oil.
- Oil is probably a mixture of sesquiterpenes.
- Wood oil obtained by wasteful method of hacking or cutting cavities in its base. Resin is formed in all depths of the wood which encourages exploiters. (Burkill 1966) (6)
- Tree said to yield 10 liters of oil each. (6)

- Oil is non-drying, limpid, light yellow, homogenous, and slightly fluorescent, with a pleasant aromatic odor, and does not become rancid.
- Wood prized for its durability and pleasant aroma.

Parts used


- In the Philippines, supa oil used as external medicine for eczema, herpes, ulcers and other skin diseases.
Supa oil: Tree oil used as illuminant; for caulking boats, making varnishes, paints, transparent paper and adulteration of other oils. (1)
• Energy: Tree has been called the kerosene tree, with an estimate 100 trees per hectare to each yield 10 liters of kerosene/year renewably. (1)
Extensive uses for cabinet and furniture making, construction, furniture and interior house trims, general carpentry, naval construction, form work, veneer making, framing. (1)

No studies found.


Updated May 2019 / January 2017

IMAGE SOURCE: Line drawing / Minor Products of Philippine Forests / Vol 2 / Philippine Resins, Gums, Seed Oils and Essential Oils / William Brown and Augustus West / Fig 10 / Sindora supa (supa) The source of supa oil / 1920 / Modified / Public domain

Additional Sources and Suggested Readings
Sindora supa Merrill / Caesalpiniaceae / Supa / James A. Duke. 1983. Handbook of Energy Crops. unpublished.
Sindora supa Merrill, Fabaceae / Pacific Island Ecosystems at Risk (PIER)
Sindora supa Merr. / Synonyms / The Plant List
Minor Products of Philippine Forests / Edited by William H. Brown y Ph. Z / 1021
Sindora supa / The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species
Sindora supa / James A. Duke / Handbook of Energy Crops / HortPurdueEdu

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.

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