Frangipani (Plumeria Alba) or kalachuchi is a small, deciduous tree, 3 to 7 meters high, with a crooked trunk, smooth and shining stems, succulent, with abundant sticky, milky latex. Bark has a smooth, papery outer layer which is grey, shining, and constantly exfoliating in small flakes. Wood is yellowish-white and soft. Branches are thick, fleshy, swollen and leafy at the tips. Leaves are crowded at the terminal end of the branch, commonly oblong in shape, 20 to 40 centimeters long, 7 centimeters wide, spirally arranged at the ends of the branches. Flowers are numerous, fragrant and large, the upper portion whitish, while the inner lower portion yellow, 5 to 6 centimeters long. Fruits are linear-oblong or ellipsoid follicles, with a pointed tip, 15 to 20 centimeters long, 1.5 to 2 centimeters in diameters. Seeds are numerous and winged.
-Flowers suppose to be source of perfume known as “Frangipani.”
– Bark contains a bitter glucoside, plumierid (2%).
– Latex contains resins, caoutchouc and calcium salts of plumieric acid: cerotinic acid and lupeol.
– Leaves contain a volatile oil.
- Oils / Perfumery: Essential oil used as ingredient in cosmetics, candles, potpourri, massage oils, and aromatherapy.
- Essential Oils : Comparative study of the essential oils of genus Plumeria Linn. from Malaysia showed the oil of P. acuminata (white flower) was predominantly of benzyl salicylate, benzyl benzoate, trans-nerolidol, neryl phenylacetate and linanlool.