The versatile ipil-ipil – part 2

Brewbaker says that, apparently the ipil ipil growth slows down when it produces pods.


Hugh M. curran Jr., a forestry consultant he has been actively introducing fast growing ipil ipil varieties in the Philippines. One of the most  avid planters of the fast growing ipil-ipill (he obtained his first planting materials from Curran) is Radio announcer Bobby Montemayor of Davao.


In August 1972, Curran gave forester M. Decena of Davao 100 seeds. From this Montemayor obtained 30 seeds which he planted in his yard. The plants grew rapidly, and he immediately recognized the potential of ipil ipil trunks as supports for banana plants. Millions of stakes are required every year to support banna plants in  Davao plantation.


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The versatile ipil-ipil


The Versatile Ipil-ipil

By: Zacarias B Sarian

Source:Greenfields, 1976


Very few trees have as many important uses as ipil-ipil – one of the most versatile trees in the Philippines.


Consider its major uses:

It is a source of fuel wood and charcoal for household and industrial use.

Ipil-ipil leaf meal is used in the manufacture of commercial feed for livestock and poultry.

It is used as forage (either grazing or soiling) for farm animals.

It is a rich source of organic fetrtilizer.

The tree itself is often used as a windbreaker as well as a nurse tree for shade-loving crops.

It is planted to prevent soil erosion.


In addition, the ipil-ipil is one of the easiest trees to grow. It will thrive even in stony areas where few other trees would take root. And since it has a deep root system, it can tolerate drought much better than many other trees.


James L, Brewbaker, professor of horticulture and genetics at the University of Hawaii, says that the root system of ipil-ipil is as deep as the tree is high.


Though the tree is not native to the Philippines, it is so widely planted throughout the archipelago that most people consider it indigenous to this country. Actually, the tree is indigenous to Central America where its usefulness has been well-known since tiem immemorial.


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