Dimocarpus longan Lour.

Last updated: 19 May 2015

Scientific Name

Dimocarpus longan Lour.


Dimocarpus pupilla Moon [Invalid], Dimocarpus undulatus Wight, Euphoria cinerea (Turcz.) Radlk., Euphoria glabra Blume, Euphoria gracilis Radlk., Euphoria leichhardtii Benth., Euphoria longan (Lour.) Steud., Euphoria longana Lam., Euphoria malaiensis (Griff.) Radlk., Euphoria microcarpa Radlk., Euphoria nephelioides Radlk., Euphoria undulata Wall. [Invalid], Euphoria verruculosa Salisb., Nephelium longan (Lour.) Hook., Nephelium longana Cambess. [1]

Vernacular Name

Malaysia Lengkeng [2], longan , mata kucing [3]
English Longan [2], dragon’s eye, dragon eye, longan fruit, lungan [4]
China Li chih nu, long yan, long yan rou, lung yen [4]
India Cempuvam, cham rev, dieng loba, kattupuvam, longyen, mata kucing, samphalbol, theifeihmung, vomb, vumb [4]
Indonesia Lengkeng [2]
Thailand Lamyai pa [2], lam yai, ma lam yai [3]
Laos Lam nhai, nam nhai [2]
Myanmar Kyet mouk [2]
Cambodia Mien [2]
Vietnam Nhan [2], lay nghin diang, mac nhan [4]
Japan Ryu-ngan, ringan, dingan [4]
France Longanier, oeil de dragon [2]

Geographical Distributions

Dimocarpus longan origin is speculated by few authors to be limited from the mountain chain from Burma through Southern China and others extend it to South-West India and Sri Lanka including the lowlands. Itis mainly grown inS China, Taiwan and North Thailand with small acreages elsewhere in Indo-China as well as Queensland (Australia) and Florida (United States) and scattered trees at higher elevations in Southeast Asia. [2]

Botanical Description

D. longan comes from the family of Sapindaceae. It is a tree that can reach up to 40 m tall, measuring 1 m trunk diametre with sometimes buttressed and exceptionally a scandent shrub. [2]

The branches are cylindrical with 5 faint grooves, sometimes with warty lenticellate and rather densely ferruginous tomentose. [2]

The leaves are 2-4(-6)-jugate and the axial parts are mostly densely hairy. The petiole is 1-20 cm long while the petiolules are 0.5-35 mm long. The leaflets are elliptical, measuring 3-45 cm x 1.5-20 cm where 1-5 times longer than wide, chartaceous to coriaceous while at above are often hairy in basal part of midrib and with thinly tufted-hairy beneath mainly on the midrib and nerves. [2]

The inflorescences are usually terminal, measure 8-40 cm long and with densely tufted-hairy. The cymules are (1-)3-5-flowered. The pedicels are 1-4 mm long. The bracts are patent and measure 1.5-5 mm long. [2]

The flowers are yellow-brown. The sepal lobes are measuring 2-5 mm x 1-3 mm. There are 5 petals measuring 1.5-6 mm x 0.6-2 mm and with densely woolly to hairless. The stamens are (6-)8(-10) while the filament is 1-6 mm long. [2]

The fruit is a drupaceous, measuring 1-3 cm in diameter, broad-ellipsoid to globular lobe(s), smooth to warty or sometimes with the aculeate measures up to 1 cm long, sometimes granular, glabrescent and yellow-brown. [2]

The seed is globular with a shining blackish-brown testa, enveloped by a thin fleshy and with a translucent white arilloid. [2]


D. longan is a subtropical tree that grows well in the tropics but requires a prominent change of seasons for satisfactory flowering. A short (2-3 months) but cool (mean temperature 15-22°C) winter season brings out a prolific bloom; in this respect it is less demanding and more predictable than lychee. From fruit set onwards, the high temperatures do not hamper development, but nights should not be warmer than 20-25°C. Ample soil moisture is needed from fruit set until maturity and suitable annual precipitation is about 1500-2000 mm. [2]

D. longan thrives on rich sandy loams where it does well on oolitic limestone but moderately acid sandy soils are more marginal and on organic muck soils flowering are deficient. It is probably because the shoot growth continues for too long. In Northern Thailand, D. longan orchards are often situated on the lighter soils along former river courses and a ribbon of trees winding between the paddy fields. The roots grow down 2-4 m to the water table. [2]

Chemical Constituent

No documentation

Plant Part Used

No documentation

Traditional Use

No documentation

Preclinical Data

No documentation

Clinical Data

No documentation


No documentation

Poisonous Management

No documentation

Line drawing


Figure 1: The line drawing of D. longan Lour. [2]


  1. The Plant List. Ver1.1. Dimocarpus longan Lour.[homepage on the Internet]. c2013 [updated 2012 APr 18; cited 2015 May 19]. Available from: http://www.theplantlist.org/tpl1.1/record/kew-2768547
  2. Choo WK, Ketsa S. Dimocarpus longan Lour.In: Verheij EWM, Coronel RE, editors. Plant Resources of South-East Asia No. 2: Edible fruits and nuts. Wageningen, Netherlands: Pudoc Scientific Publisher, 1991; p. 146-151.
  3. Herbal Medicine Research Centre, Institute for Medical Research. Compendium of medicinal plants used in Malaysia. Volume 1. Kuala Lumpur: HMRC IMR; 2002. p.270.
  4. Quattrocchi UFLC. CRC World dictionary of medicinal and poisonous plants: Common names, scientific names, eponyms, synonyms, and etymology (5 Volume set). Boca Raton, Florida: CRC Press; 2012. p. 1410.