Lansium
domesticum (Meliaceae) 

 

Common Names 

English: langsat

Spanish: lansón

Indonesia: langsat, duku, kokosan

Philippines: lansones, boboa, buahan

Malaysia: langsat, duku, duku-langsat

Thailand: langsat, duku, longkong

Vietnam: bňn-bon

 

Origin and Distribution 

Langsat is native to Thailand, Malaysia and Indonesia.  Although it is planted sporadically throughout the tropics, commercial production is mostly in Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia, the Philippines, and Vietnam.

 

Botanical Synonyms 

Aglaia dookoo, Aglaia domestica, and Aglaia aquea.

 

Description

Langsat is a medium to large tree, cultivated trees usually 15-30 feet (5-10 m) tall, while seedling trees can reach 90 feet (27 m) or more in height.  The trunk is generally straight and the branched relatively open.  The leaves are alternate and compound, around 9-20 inches (23-51 cm) long, with 5-7 leaflets.  The perfect flowers are small and white, and borne on cauliflorous spikes 4-12 inches (10-31 cm) long that emerge from older branches.  Fruits are spheroid, ellipsoid, or ovoid, around 1-2 inches (2.5-5 cm) in diameter, and occur in clusters of 4-40.  The yellowish peel is easily removed to reveal whitish translucent, aromatic, juicy pulp divided into 5-6 segments.  The flavor is reminiscent of sweet grapefruit.  Fruits usually contain 1-3 greenish seeds.

 

Langsat (Lansium domesticum) fruit

 

Propagation and Culture

Langsat may be propagated by seeds, cuttings, airlayers or grafting.  Seeds must be planted fresh, as they lose viability rapidly if allowed to dry out.  Germination occurs in 2-3 weeks, and the seedlings are slow growing.  Trees may be grafted at about 1 year of age, or when the trunk is about the diameter of a pencil.  They can be grafted by cleft, side veneer, bud, or approach.

Young trees should have 50% shade for the first 2-3 years.  Langsat trees prefer moist, fertile soil and high relative humidity for best growth.  Since they are slow growing, they are often interplanted with other fruit trees.  They require tropical conditions, and will grow from sea level to 2,400 feet (732 m) elevation.  Seedling trees may take 10-30 years or more to fruit, while grafts or airlayers can fruit in 5-6 years with good care.  A mature tree can produce from 90-650 pounds (41-308 kg) of fruit per year.  In Puerto Rico, langsat fruits from August to October.  

Cultivars and Related Species

Lansium domesticum is a highly variable species, with different forms that have been classified by some taxonomists as distinct species.  There are five basic varieties, but there may be intermediate forms with overlapping characteristics:
Langsat - Slender tree with open crown, fruits in clusters of 6-40.  Ovoid fruit about 1 inch (2.5 cm) in diameter, thin peel containing latex, sour to sweet.  Contains 1-3 green, bitter seeds.  Adapted to climates with distinct seasons.  Cultivars include 'Conception' and 'Paete' (Philippines), 'Uttaradit' (Thailand), and 'LA8' and 'LA9' (Malaysia).  'Casto' is a selection from Puerto Rico with a large fruit, low latex, and high yields.
Duku - A vigorous, spreading, symmetrical tree with dense foliage, fruit in clusters of 4-12.  Fruits are spheroid, 1-2 inches (2.5-5 cm) in diameter, with a thick peel, little to no latex, and a sweet, aromatic pulp.  The seed is ellipsoid in shape.  Adapted to tropical conditions.  'Du 1' is a Malaysian variety
Duku Langsat - Has characteristics intermediate to langsat and duku.  Fruit in clusters of 5-25, ovoid shape, sweet and aromatic, thick peel.  Varieties include 'DL1' and 'DL2' from Malaysia.
Longkong (dokong) - From Thailand, fruit spheroid, about 1.5 inches (4 cm) in diameter, thick peel with no latex, soft, sweet, aromatic pulp, and seedless or with very few seeds.
Kokosan - From Indonesia, with hairy leaves and compact fruit clusters.  Fruits dark yellow, with sour pulp and large seeds.

There are about 15 species in the genus LansiumLansium membranaceum, from Indonesia, has an edible but sour fruit up to 1.6 inches (4 cm) long.  

Uses

Langsat fruits are usually eaten fresh, but may be canned in syrup.

 

Nutritional composition per 100 g langsat fruit      

Carbohydrate 7.8-14.2 g
Protein  0.4-0.7 g
Calcium  10-19 mg
Phosphorous  20 mg
Iron  1 mg
Thiamine 0.05 mg
Riboflavin 0.02 mg
Niacin  0.5 mg
Vitamin C   4-13.4 mg

Several parts of the plant have medicinal uses. The fruit peel is dried and burned to repel mosquitoes; it is also used to treat intestinal parasites and diarrhea.  Powdered seeds are used to reduce fever, and the bark is used to treat malaria and scorpion stings. 

 

Langsat (Lansium domesticum) fruit

 

More information on langsat

Langsat (Lansium domesticum Corr.)
From Julia Morton's "Fruits of Warm Climates".

Langsat, duku, duku-langsat and dokong
Botanical description and cultural information from Malaysia.

 

 

 

 

 

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