International Teen Blogger

As part of the Landa Teen International club, weekly blogs from around the world will be featured! If you have any suggestions, let me know.

The Alexander Laurel tree (scientific name: Calophyllum inophyllum, Common name in English: Ballnut tree) originated around Malaysia in Southeast Asia and now grows all over the world in East Africa, Southern India, Indonesia Hawaii and other Pacific Islands. It’s identified as a tall fruit tree that can grow up to 60ft and grows in humid, low elevation areas near the equator. It requires at least 50 inches of rainfall a year and year round warm weather. It is rare to find this tree far from an island or the beach.


The Alexander Laurel is well known for the cosmetic and medicinal properties of the seed oil drawn from its fruits and flowers. The oil drawn from the nuts and seeds grown on the tree are modernly used in cosmetic products for its natural UV absorption. On a more scientific note, a review of the calophyllum inophyllum oil from 2011 at the University of Malaysia discusses the performance and emission of the oil from this tree as a renewable biofuel in the future. The uses of this south Asian tree go on and on. In the past, the oil was used to soothe and cure skin problems in underdeveloped Southeast Asian islands. The mature fruits were burned as a natural mosquito repellant also. Along with the modern cosmetic and medicinal benefits of all parts of the tree, customs originating in its place of origin are still practiced today. In Cambodia, the inhalation of the scent of crushed fruits and bark is medication to heal migraines. Tradition accounts for the indigenous people of Malaysia to use the wood to construct boats or to carve bowls or cups. They then shine their works off with the seed oil.


Countries all over the world have different names for this tree. In Hawaii, it is known as the “True Kamani” and in Papua New Guinea it is known as “beach calophyllum”. Each language has found its verbal interpretation for the same healing tree. Kamani translated to English means “tree” and calophyllum translates into “beauty tree”.

Links used!

Ale, 14, Landa TLLC

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