Barringtonia racemosa (L.) Spreng., Syst. Veg. 3: 127 (1826)

Species name meaning 'raceme or bunch', referring to the fruits.

Synonyms
Barringtonia apiculata (Miers) R.Knuth [Illegitimate]
Barringtonia caffra (Miers) E.Mey. ex R.Knuth
Barringtonia caffra E. Mey.
Barringtonia celebesensis R.Knuth
Barringtonia ceramensis R.Knuth
Barringtonia ceylanica (Miers) Gardner ex C.B.Clarke
Barringtonia elongata Korth.
Barringtonia excelsa A.Gray
Barringtonia inclyta Miers ex B.D.Jacks. [Invalid]
Barringtonia lageniformis Merr. & L.M.Perry
Barringtonia longiracemosa C.T.White
Barringtonia obtusangula (Blume) R.Knuth
Barringtonia pallida (Miers) Koord. & Valeton
Barringtonia racemosa Oliv.
Barringtonia racemosa (L.) Blume ex DC.
Barringtonia racemosa var. elongata (Korth.) Blume
Barringtonia racemosa var. minor Blume
Barringtonia racemosa var. procera Blume
Barringtonia racemosa var. subcuneata Miq.
Barringtonia rosaria Oken
Barringtonia rosata (Sonn.) R.Knuth
Barringtonia rumphiana (Miers) R.Knuth
Barringtonia salomonensis Rech.
Barringtonia stravadium Blanco
Barringtonia terrestris (Miers) R.Knuth
Barringtonia timorensis Blume
Butonica alba (Pers.) Miers [Illegitimate]
Butonica apiculata Miers
Butonica caffra Miers
Butonica ceylanica Miers
Butonica inclyta Miers
Butonica racemosa (L.) Juss.
Butonica rosata (Sonn.) Miers
Butonica rumphiana Miers
Butonica terrestris Miers
Caryophyllus racemosus (L.) Stokes
Eugenia racemosa L.
Huttum racemosum (L.) Britten
Megadendron ambiguum Miers
Megadendron pallidum Miers
Menichea rosata Sonn.
Michelia apiculata (Miers) Kuntze
Michelia ceylanica (Miers) Kuntze
Michelia racemosa (L.) Kuntze
Michelia rosata (Sonn.) Kuntze
Michelia timorensis (Blume) Kuntze
Stravadium album Pers. [Illegitimate]
Stravadium obtusangulum Blume
Stravadium racemosum (L.) Sweet
Stravadium rubrum DC. [Illegitimate]

Description
A shrub or small to medium-sized tree, 2-20(-27) m tall, trunk 10-50 cm in diameter, twigs 3-6 mm in diameter; leaves tufted, obovate-oblong or obovate-lanceolate, 14-36(-42) cm x 4-14(-16) cm, base cuneate, acute to acuminate, petiole slightly winged; raceme or spike terminal, rarely ramiflorous, pendulous, 20-70(-100) cm long, (3-)7(-20)-flowered, pedicel up to 2.5 cm long, opening buds 0.5-1 cm long, calyx tube about 2-5 mm long, accrescent, rupturing in 2-4(-5) (un-)equal segments, red, petals 4, elliptical, convex, 1.5-2.5 cm x 0.5-1.5 cm, white (occasionally red), stamens in (5-)6 whorls, 2-4 cm long, white, pink, purple or red, ovary (2-)3-4-celled, style (2-)3-5.5 cm long, pink, purple, red or white; berry ovoid, 5-7(-9) cm x 2-4(-5.5) cm, subtetragonous, truncate, tapering at base, pericarp 3-12 mm thick, exocarp rather fleshy with dispersed fibres and a wrinkled, reticulate or fissured outer layer, endocarp a strong layer of longitudinal anastomosing fibres covered inside by a thin brown membrane; seed ovoid, 2-4 cm x 1-1.5 cm, subtetragonous, tapering towards the apex, rather flat at the base. [from PROSEA]

Ecology
Is found in primary and secondary forest, mostly restricted to inundated flood plains on tidal river banks, or in swampy localities, also behind the mangrove or in the upper mangrove swamp. It grows well under slightly saline conditions or on beaches near high water level, with a preference for heavy clay, loam or rich volcanic soils, usually a little above sea-level and occasionally up to 500(900) m altitude.

Uses
In Indonesia, the pounded roots, fruits or bark are used as a fish poison. In the Philippines the bark is used as a fish poison. A decoction of the bark is externally applied as an antirheumatic. In Peninsular Malaysia and East New Britain, leaves, roots or bark are externally applied to treat chickenpox. In Peninsular Malaysia, a poultice is also applied for itch. In Papua New Guinea, a decoction of the scraped nut is drunk to relieve a cough, sinusitis or bronchitis. In Indo-China, the roots are employed as a febrifuge; an infusion is used for measles. The fruit is considered efficacious for coughs and asthma and the peeled seed mixed with flour and oil for diarrhoea. The seed is internally applied for colic and externally for ophthalmia. The seed is also used as a fish poison. In India, the fruit is used for poulticing sore throat and skin eruptions. The fresh or cooked leaves are eaten as a vegetable. It is occasionally planted as a roadside tree.

Distribution
From eastern Africa and Madagascar to Sri Lanka, India, Burma (Myanmar), Indo-China, southern China, Taiwan, the Ryukyu Islands, Thailand, the Andaman and Nicobar Islands, throughout the Malesian region towards Micronesia, Polynesia (east to Fiji and Samoa) and northern Australia.

Local names
Brunei: putat aying.
Burma (Myanmar): kye-bin, kyi.
English: Common putat.
Indonesia: butun darat (Moluccas), penggung (Javanese, Sundanese), putat sungai (Bangka).
Laos: som pawng.
Malaysia: putat ayam, putat kampong (Peninsular), putat ayer (Sabah).
Papua New Guinea: paopao (Gunantuna, East New Britain), paniak (Plitty, Manus Province).
Philippines: putat (Tagalog, Bikol, Samar-Leyte Bisaya, Panay Bisaya, Sulu, Magindanao), nuling, tuba-tuba (Cebu Bisaya).
Thailand: chick, chik ban, chik suan (central).
Vietnam: tim lang, chi[ees]c hoa v[af]ng.