Ahonui Botanical Gardens is full of exotic medicinal fruits and plants from around the world. Phaleria macrocarpa is a particularly potent medicinal that has been used in India and Indonesia for hundreds of years. The people of Indonesia call it Mahkota Dewa, which translates directly to "God's Crown." Our specimen has been producing fruit for the last couple of months on the slopes of our Sacred Valley. It is still a small shrub (see below), but will eventually become a small tree, perhaps 20 feet tall in this particular location on a relatively steep slope.
Its fragrant little flowers (second picture below) eventually give birth to the bright red fruit (third picture). The fruit starts dark green and matures into the almost maroon color when mature.
For medicinal treatments the fruit, leaves and stems are used. The fruit is extremely poisonous when raw and must be prepared for human consumption. Generally, this is done by grating or shredding it and then drying the material for use as a tea. It's properties are amazing. Native populations have used it to counter diabetes, liver diseases, vascular problems, high blood pressure, and cancer.
Modern research into it has proven its ability to control cancer, impotency, dysentery, hemorrhoids, diabetes mellitus, allergies, liver and heart disease, acne and high cholesterol. It contains anti-histamine, antioxidant and anti-cancer substances.
We have not yet begun to process plants such as God's Crown, but in the coming years we hope to harvest our medicines and store them for use as teas or tinctures.
The shrub is still small and so is a little hard to make out, with the green on green. If you look careful, you can see a little red fruit hidden in the lower branches.
Phaleria macrocarpa flower:
God's Crown or Mahkota Dewa: