Garcinia mangostana L.

Etymology Genus After Laurent Garcen, a 18th century French botanist
Species From the common name Mangosteen
Family Clusiaceae
Synonyms Mangostana garcinia Gaertn.
Common Names Mangosteen, Manggis
Status Exotic: Casual
Form Tree
Native Distribution Malaysia and Indonesia


Garcinia mangostana is a popular cultivated tree, identifiable from the dense foliage and large (about 20cm) opposite leaves. It has a distinct central stem with primary branching extending from common points. These, together with the bud hidden at the end of the branch (diagnostic of the family) helps to zoom in to the Mangosteen.

Interesting Facts:

The Mangosteen is a very slow growing tree, rarely fruiting before 15 years of age (Corner, 1997). The juice of the purple exocarp is difficult to wash away if stained on fabric. It is also used for tanning leather and dyeing purposes (Wee, 2003).

A young Mangosteen tree.

Leaves underside. Note the large size and venation.

A bud can be found hidden between "cut".

Primary branching

Flowers and developing fruits.

Unriped fruit.

Ripe purple fruits.


Corner EJH. (1997) Wayside Trees of Malaya. Volume 1. 4th edition. The Malaysian Nature Society, Kuala Lumpur. 476 pp.
Wee YC. (2003) Tropical Trees and Shrubs: A Selection for Urban Planting. Sun Tree Publishing, USA. 392 pp.

Author: Jake
Posted: 2014-07-22 / Modified: 2017-12-25