RadermacheraRadermachera is a genus of flowering plants in the family Verbenaceae. The genus contains about 30 species, all native to Asia. Radermachera is evergreen trees or shrubs, growing to 5–25 m tall. The leaves are opposite, simple, entire or toothed, 6–26 cm long and 3–11 cm broad, with a petiole 1–3 cm long. The flowers are produced in terminal panicles or corymbs, each flower white with five petals fused at the base, 5–8 mm diameter; they are followed by spherical fruits 5–10 mm diameter, ripening black or dark purple.
Radermachera species are widely cultivated as ornamental plants in warmer climates, where they are used as hedges and in topiary, and as indoor pot plants. A number of cultivars have been developed, including 'China Doll', 'Green Mist', 'Snowflake', and 'Variegata'. The species R. sinica is the most widely planted, and has given rise to numerous hybrids and cultivars.
Radermachera are generally fast-growing plants, but can be slow to flower. They prefer a sunny position, but will also tolerate partial shade. They need a well-drained soil, and should be watered regularly during the growing season. They are generally not tolerant of frost, but some species such as R. sinica and R. indica can tolerate occasional light frosts down to about −2 °C.
Radermachera species are used as food plants by the larvae of some moth species, including Endoclita excrescens and Endoclita malabaricus. The Radermachera genus was first described by Carl Peter Thunberg in 1784. The name Radermachera honors Johann Georg Räder (1737-1797), a botanist and librarian at Frankfurt University.
Radermachera species are native to tropical Asia, from the Himalayas east to southern China and Indonesia. The best-known species is Radermachera sinica, which is widely cultivated as an ornamental plant in warmer climates. Other notable species include Radermachera amygdalina, Radermachera indica, and Radermachera ×ylocarpa.
Radermachera plants are generally evergreen trees or shrubs, growing to 5–25 m tall. The leaves are opposite, simple, entire or toothed, 6–26 cm long and 3–11 cm broad, with a petiole 1–3 cm long. The flowers are produced in terminal panicles or corymbs, each flower white with five petals fused at the base, 5–8 mm diameter; they are followed by spherical fruits 5–10 mm diameter, ripening black or dark purple.
Global radermachera production
According to a report by the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), the global production of Radermachera sinica in 2013 was about 1.3 million tonnes, with China accounting for more than 90% of the total.
The main producing countries of Radermachera sinica are China, India, Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia. In China, the main producing areas are located in the provinces of Guangdong, Fujian, Yunnan, Guangxi, and Hainan.
In India, Radermachera sinica is grown in the states of Kerala, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, and Maharashtra. In Vietnam, it is mainly cultivated in the northern provinces of Thai Binh, Nam Dinh, Hai Duong, and Vinh Phuc. Laos is one of the major producers of Radermachera sinica in Southeast Asia. The plant is also cultivated in Cambodia, but to a lesser extent.
Radermachera sinica is used for a variety of purposes, including as an ornamental plant, in traditional medicine, and as a source of wood. The leaves and flowers of the plant are used to make tea, while the wood is used for construction purposes. The global production of Radermachera sinica is expected to continue to grow in the future due to the increasing demand for the plant's products.