This section is from the book "The Standard Cyclopedia Of Horticulture Vol2", by L. H. Bailey. See also: Western Garden Book: More than 8,000 Plants - The Right Plants for Your Climate - Tips from Western Garden Experts.
(Makassar, kananga; Malay. kenanga). Annonaceae. Perfume-yielding tropical trees.
Closely allied to Desmos but differing in having the apex of the connectives of the stamens prolonged into a point, instead of being broadened into a hood-like covering for the pollen-sacs: sepals 3; petals 6 in 2 series, valvate, nearly equal, flat, linear; stamens many, closely crowded on the convex torus, the connective produced into a long tapering point; carpels indefinite, clustered in the center of the mass of stamens; ovules in 2 columns or apparently in a single column; style linear or linear-oblong, terminating in an obtuse swelling; ripe carpels (fruit) several, pedicelled, ovoid or oblong and more or less constricted between the seeds. The name Cananga, usually applied to this genus, was used by Aublet in 1775 for an entirely different genus, and cannot therefore be valid for the present one. Baillon recognized this fact, and proposed the name Canangium, without, however, coupling it with specific names. It was taken up by Sir George King in his Annonaceae of British India, 1893, and was applied by him to the celebrated ylangylang tree, Canangium odoratum.
Fig. 777. Canangium odoratum. a, flowering branch; b, stamens; C, longitudinal section of fruit; d, fruit cluster.
King (Uvaria odorata, Lam. Unona odorata, Dunal. Candnga odorata, Hook. f. & Thorns.)-Ylangylang. Ilangilang. Alangilang. Moso'or. Moto-oi. Fig. 777. A tree bearing a profusion of greenish yellow fragrant flowers with long narrow petals, from which the celebrated ilangilang is made. The tree is found in S. India, Java, the Philippines, the Malay Archipelago, and many islands of the tropical Pacific. It occurs spontaneously as well as in cultivation, and its seeds are widely scattered by fruit-pigeons and other birds. In the Samoan Isls. it is much beloved by the natives, who make garlands of "moso'oi" with which to adorn themselves, and they celebrate its fragrance in their songs. The flowers yield a fragrant volatile oil known in commerce as the oil of ilangilang, usually obtained by steam distillation. The natives use a much simpler process in securing oil for anointing their heads and bodies. Flowers are put into coconut oil and, after remaining a short time, are replaced by fresh ones, the oil being subjected to a gentle heat. "Macassar oil" is prepared in this way, flowers of Michelia Champaca being often added to those of the ylangylang.
Brandisanum, Safford (Unona Brandisana, Pierre. Unona latifolia, Hook. f. & Thorns., not Dunal). A tree endemic in the forests of lower Cochin China and Cambodia, with very fragrant flowers resembling those of C. odoratum but with the petals relatively broader, constricted at the base, and thicker, and the leaves usually cordate at the base and tomentose beneath, instead of rounded at the base and pubescent beneath: the fruit resembles that of the preceding species but with fewer seeds arranged almost in a single row, but on close inspection seen to be biseriate. The flowers yield a perfume similar to that of the true ylangylang of commerce. W. E. Safford.