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Characteristics of Johey Oak Tree (Artocarpus odoratissimus) in the Wild

Johey Oak Tree (Artocarpus odoratissimus)

Johey Oak (Artocarpus odoratissimus) is a fruit tree from the genus Artocarpus. The fruit is similar to a small jackfruit, with a strong fragrant smell.

This tree is known by many names, for example in Indonesia it is called Terap or Tarap, in Mindanao, it is called Marang, in Sabah, it is called Lumuk, in Sarawak, it is called Timadang, and the common name in English is Johey Oak.

Johey Oak is less widespread and is better known in the Philippines where it is widely cultivated (e.g. Mindoro, Mindanao, Basilan, and Sulu), northern Borneo (Brunei, Sabah, Sarawak, and East and North Kalimantan) and Thailand. Its origin is thought to be from the northern part of Borneo, namely Sabah, where the wild type is found in nature. The Johey Oak tree is also cultivated in Australia (Queensland) and India (Tripura).

Johey Oak is primarily grown for its fruit, which can be eaten fresh or prepared as cakes. The fruit should be eaten within a few hours of opening, as the fragrant odor quickly diminishes and the color may change as it oxidizes. The seeds can also be eaten roasted or boiled with salt.

 

INFO: Artocarpus odoratissimus is not the same as Artocarpus elasticus, although both are often referred to incorrectly in Java and Malaysia.

 

Artocarpus odoratissimus has been on the IUCN Red List as a Near Threatened (NT) species since 2 October 2017.

 

Characteristics of Johey Oak Leaf

Artocarpus odoratissimus Leaf
Source: sconk

The leaves are oblong to inverted egg-shaped, measuring 10-25 × 15-50 cm, with flat or shallowly serrated edges, blunt or slightly pointed tips, and stems 2-3 cm long. The supporting leaves are egg-shaped, 1-8 cm long, and have yellow or red hair, when they fall off they leave ring marks on the twigs.
 

Characteristics of Johey Oak Flower

Johey Oak is monoecious. Inflorescences occur in solitary heads, which appear in the leaf axils. The male flower heads are oblong to club-shaped, measuring 2-6 × 4-11 cm.
 

Characteristics of Johey Oak Fruit

Artocarpus odoratissimus Fruit
Source: sconk

The fruit is slightly round to oval in shape, 15-20 cm long and 13 cm wide, weighs around 1 kg, and is greenish-yellow when ripe. Its thick skin is covered with soft, wide spines. The fruit appears at the end of the branch like the Breadfruit (Artocarpus altilis).

The fruit can be harvested when they are full size but still firm and left to ripen until soft. Ripe fruit is opened by cutting the skin, twisting it, and pulling gently. The inside of the fruit is somewhat similar to Jackfruit (Artocarpus heterophyllus), but it is white, sweet, very fragrant, feels slippery and soft, and a bit like jelly on the tongue. The core is relatively large, but the inedible portion of the pseudofruit pulp is much smaller. The seeds measure 8 × 12 mm.

The fruit is usually found at the beginning of the rainy season, between August and January depending on the location.
 

Characteristics of Johey Oak Tree

Artocarpus odoratissimus Tree
Source: anonyme973

Johey Oak can grow to a height of 25 meters, and the trunk can have a diameter of up to 40 cm, the bark is grayish. The branches of this tree have long yellow to reddish hairs.

This species is mostly grown for local consumption, the short shelf life of the fruit limits its wider use.

This tree can grow from areas near the coast to a height of around 1,000 m above sea level. It likes sandy clay soil and areas with fairly high and even rainfall.
 

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