Photo by Melody

PlantFiles: Bishopwood, Javawood, Javanese Bishopwood, Bischofia, Toog Tree
Bischofia javanica

Family: Euphorbiaceae (yoo-for-bee-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Bischofia (biss-CHOFF-ee-uh) (Info)
Species: javanica (juh-VAHN-ih-kuh) (Info)

Synonym:Andrachne trifoliata
Synonym:Bischofia cummingiana
Synonym:Bischofia oblongifolia
Synonym:Bischofia trifoliata

One member has or wants this plant for trade.


over 40 ft. (12 m)

Unknown - Tell us

USDA Zone 9a: to -6.6 C (20 F)
USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 C (25 F)
USDA Zone 10a: to -1.1 C (30 F)
USDA Zone 10b: to 1.7 C (35 F)
USDA Zone 11: above 4.5 C (40 F)

Sun Exposure:
Full Sun
Sun to Partial Shade
Light Shade

Seed is poisonous if ingested
All parts of plant are poisonous if ingested

Bloom Color:

Bloom Time:
Mid Spring

Grown for foliage

Other details:
May be a noxious weed or invasive
Requires consistently moist soil; do not let dry out between waterings

Soil pH requirements:
5.6 to 6.0 (acidic)
6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)
6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)

Patent Information:
Unknown - Tell us

Propagation Methods:
Unknown - Tell us

Seed Collecting:
Unknown - Tell us

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1 positive
2 neutrals
2 negatives

Gardeners' Notes:

Positive RaymondK On Oct 31, 2007, RaymondK from Lehigh Acres, FL (Zone 10a) wrote:

I had worked with these trees on many occasions and enjoyed the shade and comfort from the canopy.
I had never experienced any ill with this species at all and it is unfortunate some of the trees were damaged by high winds. The ones I did see that made it through the hurricanes were either grouped together or most of the lateral limbs were removed when they were younger. It is truly an awsome tree.

Negative MotherNature4 On May 19, 2005, MotherNature4 from Bartow, FL (Zone 9a) wrote:

These are VERY INVASIVE trees in south Florida. Everyone should do their best to eliminate them. Their dense shade, and perhaps toxins, prevent other plants from growing under them, and the seeds come up everywhere.

I would remind everyone that since it is an Euphorbiaceae, there are skin irritants in the bark and foliage, so I don't think one should attempt to climb it. In fact, care should be taken when handling the cut branches.

Negative jnana On May 18, 2005, jnana from South Florida, FL (Zone 10b) wrote:

This is a huge tree with dense canopy. It is a dangerous tree to have near a house during hurricanes. It is listed as a Category I of most invasive plants by the Florida Exotic Pest Plant Council. It should not be planted in Florida.

Neutral NativePlantFan9 On Apr 16, 2005, NativePlantFan9 from Boca Raton, FL (Zone 10a) wrote:

This is a large, deciduous or semi (partially) deciduous tree is native to tropical southeast Asia and the Pacific Islands. It has been introduced as a shade and ornamental landscape tree to many tropical and subtropical areas, including the Caribbean and central and southern Florida (including the Keys). Here it has become naturalized in many natural habitats and disturbed sites, including edges of sugarcane fields, cypress swamps, edges, and cypress swamp domes and centers, canal edges, pinelands, and edges and interiors of hammocks, including some areas near the coastal areas in Martin, Palm Beach, Broward, Miami-Dade, Monroe (the Keys and possibly mainland Monroe County), Collier, Lee and Charlotte counties. It has an aggressive root system and often shades out native plants and alters the native ecosystem, similar to Java Plum (Syzigium cumini, S. jambolana or Eugenia cumini, among other scientific names), another naturalized and invasive exotic in central and southern Florida. Bishopwood is a Category One Invasive by FLEPPC, like Java Plum. However, Bishopwood is still a valuable shade tree and may make a good climbing tree for people or to sit in, since (especially older) trees may habe thick branches.

This tree is very defoliated in storms and hurricanes, but quickly grows back to produce a dense new growth of green leaves.

The flowers (and pollen) are yellow-green to green and bloom usually in winter or in spring. The flowers and pollen are numerous and small.

The seeds are in hanging clusters and are round and brownish (wgen ripe). When not ripe, they are green or greenish.

Neutral davidlaing On Nov 17, 2004, davidlaing from Punta Gorda, FL wrote:

Bishopwood is a huge, aggressive, fast-growing tree that gives excellent shade, but it is also quite messy, being semideciduous (winter dry season here) and shedding its abundant inflorescences of tiny yellow flowers (My tree is a male). When blooming, it produces pollen profusely and can be a problem for those with allergies. My tree, which volunteered in my yard in Punta Gorda, Florida, was completely defoliated in Hurricane Charley, losing most of its branches right down to the trunk. Now, three months later, it already has a massive, dense crown almost half the diameter of the original one. Bishopwood is prone to scale, which I have found impossible to control by any means other than Bayer systemic insecticide poured on the roots.


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Boca Raton, Florida
Bradenton, Florida
Hollywood, Florida
Lehigh Acres, Florida
Punta Gorda, Florida

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