The Lignum Vitae is one of the most useful trees in the world. Its trunk gum, bark, fruit, leaves, and flowers all have useful purposes. Early settlers in Jamaica made use of all these elements. The nation’s national flower is the blossom of the Lignum Vitae. The tree’s tough, heavy wood is especially suited to specialized purposes, including as bearings in ship propellers. Its gum was exported at one time and used to treat venereal diseases. Lignum Vitae fruit is used as a purgative and to treat diseases, while its bark also has medicinal properties. The leaves of the tree were used to scour floors and to whiten laundry. They are also good for repelling flies.
Lignum vitae is Latin for “wood of life”.
Photo Source: Hirt’s Garden