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Campus Trees

Guaiacum officinale


Family:  Zygophyllaceae

Common name: Tree of Life, Lignum Vitae

Flowering Period:March-October


  • Tree of Life is the heaviest and densest wood in the world and will rapidly sink to the bottom when placed in water. It resists rot caused by insects and moisture so effectively that remains of Lignum vitae wood used as posts for dwellings.
  • This small tree is very slow growing, reaching about 10 m in height with a trunk diameter of 60 cm.
  • The tree is essentially evergreen throughout most of its native range. The leaves are compound, 2.5 to 3 cm in length, and 2 cm wide.
  • Flowers are showy, to 2.5 cm across, bluish purple, fading to white. The flowers have five petals which yield a bright yellow-orange fruit with red flesh and black seeds.


  • Some of the resins active ingredients are effective anti-inflammatory agents.
  • Due to this fact, it is used against sore throat and gout.