Guaiacum officinale is an evergreen Tree growing to 10 m (32ft) by 10 m (32ft) at a slow rate. It is hardy to zone (UK) Suitable for: light (sandy), medium. Guaiac is a natural resin extracted from the wood of the Guaiacum officinale plant . The basis of the test depends on the presence of the heme moiety from the. Synonyms, Guajacum officinale L. Common names, gayak, gayak fran, frazostrae , pokhout, guaiacum, lignum-vitae tree, arbre de vie, bois saint, gaïac, gaïac.

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The blue flowers have five petals that yield a bright-yellow-orange fruit with red flesh and black seeds. Karen General Information Lignum ofcicinale is a small, slow-growing, densely-crowned, evergreen tree growing to a height of 3 – 12 metres.

The leaflets are cm in length. The wood is remarkable for the direction of its fibres, each layer of which crosses the previous diagonally[ ].

Small tree Photograph by: The most important as well officinzle the most exacting use for it is for bearing or bushing blocks lining the stern tubes of propeller shafts of steamships[ ]. Tree of Life is a tree yeilding the true lignum vitae, a wood once used to treat syphilis. It grows best in areas where annual daytime temperatures are within the range 22 – 28? Guaiac cards are impregnated with the resin and are used in determining whether stool contains blood.

Publisher Government of Jamaica, Kingston.

Lignum Vitae, Guaiacum, Guayacan. It is also added to edible oils to prevent acidification. Guaiacum bijugum Stokes; Guiacum breynii Spreng. Alluvial deposits near the coast[ ].

An extremely valuable timber is obtained from the tree.


IUCN Red List of Threatened Species

The genus, Guaiacum, is taken from the tree’s Caribbian name. The tree also has great ornamental value – beautiful blue flowers grow in great profusion and almost cover the tree and remain for a long time. It frequently grows in coastal areas. It can be killed by temperatures of 1? Retrieved from ” https: The wood is officinal in many Pharmacopoeias, and owes its medicinal properties to the presence of the resin, which is also official[ ]. Where it still occurs, populations are now severely reduced.

Guaiacum officinale is one of two species yielding the true lignum vitaethe other being Guaiacum sanctum. Resin is applied to the tooth for a toothache, officinalle applied externally for rheumatism. It prefers a officibale annual rainfall in the range 1, – 2,mm, but tolerates – 3,mm[ ]. If you have any useful information about this plant, please leave a comment. It is hardy to zone UK It cannot grow in the shade. The flowers are blue in color with five petals.

Tell a friend about this flower! Rather dated, so many of the names have been changed since then. It can be found in lowland dry forest, woodland, and thicket. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. It is a useful remedy in the treatment of chronic forms of rheumatism ; also in syphilitic offlcinale gouty affections, scrofula, skin diseases, dysmenorrhoea, and other uterine affections[ ]. The resin sometimes flows spontaneously from the stem of the tree; at other times, it is obtained artificially by jagging or notching the stem and allowing the exuding juice to harden, or by boring holes in logs of the wood and then placing them on a fire so that the resin is melted and runs through the hole, or by boiling chips in salt and water, when the resin floats on the surface of the water[ ].


Always seek advice from a professional before using a plant medicinally. Prefers a pH in the range 5 – 7. Tree growing in native habitat Photograph by: Smartphone users quickly have information on a plant directly for the pfaf. The fruits are heart-shaped, yellow-orange with red flesh and black seeds. For a list of references used on this page please go here A special thanks to Ken Fern for some of the information used on this page.

It is also added to edible oils to prevent acidification[ ]. If you have important information about this plant that may help other users please add a comment or link below. The tree is essentially evergreen throughout most of its native range. It prefers moist soil and can tolerate drought. Guaiacum officinale – L. The plant can tolerate maritime exposure.

You will receive a range of benefits including: The most important use for it is for bearing lining the stern tubes of propeller shafts. Succeeds in a range of fertile, moisture-retentive soils[ ]. Roughbark lignum-vitae was listed as an endangered species by the IUCN in America – Colombia, Venezuela, the Guyanas to the Caribbean. Other common names include rough bark lignum-vitae, guaiacwood, pockholz, and tree of life.

Guaiacum officinale

The plant is grown from seed. The tree is native to the West Indies, southern Florida, the western coast of Central America, and the northern coast of South America. Listed as Endangered EN C2a v2.