Michelia champaca L.


Large tree in the wild, medium size in cultivation. Branchlets and stipules hairy. Leaves elliptic to ovate, 10-30 cm long, 4-10 cm wide, base wedge shaped or rounded, vein pairs 14-23. Leaf stalk 1.5-3.5 cm long. Flowers pale yellow becoming orange, strongly fragrant, perianth segments 15, 2-4.5 cm long; summer to mid autumn. Carpels about 30 together on a common stalk 3-5 mm long.

India to China &Indonesia

Frost tender when young.

The source of champac and sapu oils distilled from the flowers and used in perfumery in Asia; the leaves are fed to silkworms (as well as the traditional Morus, Mulberry, leaves). The flowers are used as offerings in religious ceremonies.

Yellow to orange flowers.

Specimens?NSW: Sydney, Darling Harbour (Chinese Garden). VIC: Melbourne (Royal Bot. Gds, Director's Tunnel, ptd c. 1984).

Source: Spencer, R. (1997). Magnoliaceae. In: Spencer, R.. Horticultural Flora of South-eastern Australia. Volume 2. Flowering plants. Dicotyledons. Part 1. The identification of garden and cultivated plants. University of New South Wales Press.