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dye tree, Morinda citrifolia

erry (uk -)
errj (ug -)
(yuku -)
in Uw Oykangand
in Uw Olkola
in Pakanh

Dye tree, Morinda citrifolia

The dye tree, also called cheesefruit or great morinda, Morinda citrifolia (family Rhamnaceae), is a small tree with a dense foliage of large glossy dark green leaves. It has small white flowers and a fruit that turns creamy white when ripe.

A yellow dye is prepared from the root of this tree. This dye is used to decorate dillybags such as the fine weave bag and string. See the Plant usage page for more information on the uses of plant products in traditional industry.

The fruit is also edible, although many people don't eat it because of the sour taste. The fruit is called egng erry in Uw Oykangand and egng errj in Uw Olkola. For more information on plant food and the traditional subsistence of Aboriginal people in central Cape York Peninsula, see the Edible plant products page.

Some Uw Oykangand speakers pronounce the name of this tree as errj, the same as Uw Olkola speakers.

e-mail: Philip Hamilton.