Boaria molinae A.DC.
Celastrus boaria Baill.
Celastrus maytenus Willd.
Celastrus uncinatus Ruiz & Pav.
Maytenus chilensis DC.
Senacia maytenus Lam.
Common Name: Mayten
Mayten is a slow-growing evergreen shrub or tree with a dense, oval crown and graceful, weeping foliage. It can grow up to a height of 24 metres in the wild, though cultivated plants are usually rather smaller[
]. The bole can be 35cm or more in diameter[
The tree is harvested from the wild for medicinal purposes and the oil obtained from its seed, which are used locally. It is sometimes grown as an ornamental.
S. America - Chile, Argentina, southern and eastern Brazil, Peru.
Pasturelands, avoiding the competition for light from other trees[
]. Often found growing in the dryest, poorest, arid lowland soils[
|Other Uses Rating||
|Cultivation Status||Ornamental, Wild
A plant of warm temperate areas to highland areas in the Tropics, where it can be found at elevations above 2,000 metres. A fairly frost-hardy plant, tolerating temperatures down to about -10°c[
]. This species has a very wide natural range, so far all the introductions have come from Chile but provenances in Argentina might provide even hardier trees that could succeed in colder areas of the country[
]. Plants succeed outdoors in southern England and have produced self-sown seedlings at Lanarth in Cornwall (hardiness zone 8 - 9)[
]. Large mature trees are growing in woodland conditions at Hilliers Arboretum in Hampshire (hardiness zone 7 - 8)[
Requires a moist but well-drained soil[
]. Succeeds in most soils in a sunny position[
] and also in semi-shade[
]. Requires a position sheltered from strong cold winds[
A slow-growing tree[
Cattle are very strongly attracted to the leaves of this plant and will not touch other forage when this species is available[
Plants are usually monoecious, but occasional hermaphrodite flowers are produced[
An edible oil is obtained from the seed. Used for cooking[
The leaves are febrifuge and slightly purgative[
]. A decoction is used in the treatment of malaria[
A decoction of the leaves is used externally to wash wounds[
The reddish-grey wood is compact, very elastic, rather light in weight, extremely hard. It is excellent for general carpentry and was used traditionally for making bows[
Seed - we have no information for this species but suggest sowing the seed in spring in a greenhouse. When they are large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in the greenhouse for at least their first winter. Plant them out into their permanent positions in late spring or early summer, after the last expected frosts.
Cuttings of half-ripe wood, mid summer in a frame[
Division of suckers in the autumn or spring[