Family • Fabaceae / Leguminosae - Sindora supa Merr. - KEROSENE TREE

Scientific names

Sindora supa Merr.
Sindora wallichii F.-Vill.

Common names

Balayong (Tayabas)
Manopo (Bik., Tag.)
Paina (Bik.)
Parina (Bik.)
Supa (Tag., Bik.)
Yakal-dilau (Tayabas)
Kerosene tree (Engl.)

Supa is a is a deciduous, unarmed tree reaching a height of 20 to 30 meters. The bole is straight, regular, and without buttresses. Leaves are pinnate, about 15 centimeters long, with three pairs of leaflets which are glabrous, coriaceous, elliptic, 3.5 to 9 centimeters long and 2.5 to 5 centimeters wide. Panicles are terminal or axillary, 10 to 15 centimeters long. Pods are broadly ovate, about 4 centimeters long and 6 centimeters wide, rounded at the base, somewhat beaked at the apex, evenly provided with spinelike thorns. Seeds are 1-3, black, shiny, with a large and fleshy aril.

Additional Sources and Suggested Readings

(1) Sindora supa Merrill / Caesalpiniaceae / Supa / James A. Duke. 1983. Handbook of Energy Crops. unpublished.

(2) Sindora supa Merrill, Fabaceae / Pacific Island Ecosystems at Risk (PIER)

kerosene fruit Pittosporum resiniferum Pitttosporaceae

– Native to the Philippines.
– Found in forests at low and medium altitudes in Quezon, Nueva Ecija, Camarines and Albay provinces in Luzon; and in Mindoro.
– Also reported in Australia. Possibly naturalized in northern Queensland.


– Freshly cut tree yields about 10 liters of oil.
– Oil is probably a mixture of sesquiterpenes.


– Oil is non-drying, limpid, light yellow, homogenous, and slightly fluorescent, with a pleasant aromatic odor, and does not become rancid.
– Wood prized for its durability and pleasant aroma.

Parts used

Supa oil used as external medicine for eczema, herpes, ulcers and other skin diseases.
• Oil: Oil used as illuminant, for caulking boats, making varnishes, paints, transparent paper and adulteration of other oils.
• Wood: Extensive uses for cabinet and furniture making, construction, furniture and interior house trims, general carpentry, naval construction, form work, veneer making, framing,