Bois de quivi

Turraea thouarsiana

Unusual in natural environment. Endemic to La Réunion and Mauritius.

Classified of Minor Concern (LC).  

Hermaphrodite shrub up to 4m tall. Meliaceae family. Light-grey and verrucous bark.

Alternate leaves which are petiolated, arranged in a spiral, obovate or elliptic in form and almost rugged. The medial rib is prominent on the upper side and protuding on the underside with 6 to 10 pairs of ascending secondary veins protruding on both sides.Very marked heterophylla – juvenile leaves are often arranged on the same plane (alternating distics), shiny and very distinctly lobbed

Its flowers are hermaphrodite with 4 petals colored yellow and that gather at the ase of the leaves in groups of 3 to 10 flowers.

The fruits are capsules measured 5 to 6 mm in diameter which spontaneously open at maturity and contains brown seeds surrounded by an orange flesh.

  Picto médicinal This species is listed on the French Pharmacopea.

Harvest is done by picking up the seeds already fallen on the ground or directly on the trees before the fruits are consumed by birds.

Maturity signs of the fruit : It swells, its color turns from light green to a darker green. The lines of the opening are more visible until the fruit ends up splitting, revealing the orange flesh that enrobs the seeds, brown colored.

Protocol: Harvest only the fruits which are just opened or those with the characters mentioned above. Indeed, the fruits open gradually on tree directly. Harvesting only open fruit involves passing very regularly on the trees. To recognize a ripe fruit that has not yet opened from a not-ready, immature fruit remains difficult. To improvethe capacity to recognize it, it is recommended to start by collecting several fuits with different size and color. Then, open them by applying pressure on them and observing the appearance of the seeds and its flesh – a ripe fruit has an orange flesh and brown seeds while for an immature fruit, its flesh is yellowish flesh and its seeds white.

Harvesting period: In September in the Cirque de Mafate (in the Roche-Plate zone).

Harvesting in a natural environment: It is quite problemtic given the nature of the fruit (very short pan of action), the lack of synchronization in the maturation of the fruit on the same tree, and the small number of seeds. 6 individuals were harvested in the LIFE+ COREXERUN project.

Post-harvest handling: Leave the fruit uncovered for a few days until it ripens and opens by itself.

Number of seeds per fruit: 8 in general.

Germination Rate : 31% (rate that is found between 22 and 34% depending on the lots).

Duration before the first day of germination: 15 to 21 days.

Age before transplanting : 120 to 180 days.

Problems / Observations during culture :

  •  the species are fragile to transplanting  : some plants dry out

  •  fragile to weaning if the process starts tooearly, wait for the first adult leaves

  •  slow growth : 12 to 16 months

Mortality rate after transplanting : 40 %.

Dynamic Stage : Pioneer Nomad

Number of plants reintroduced : 526.

Mortality rate after planting : Low, 7 %

Mortaliy rate 1 year after planting : Very high, 95 %. Even if th Bois de quivi may be present in very open and dry areas, it only grows in altitudes well above that of the site os reconstitution of the project LIFE + Forêt Sèche. On La Grande Chaloupe, it can only be found at 550 meteers above sea level. No data is available on trhe planatations carried out in the high part of the site as the species could not be produced in time.

Average growth 1 year after planting : Unknown