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Official Journal of the Japan Wood Research Society

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Blackening of Diospyros genus xylem in connection with boron content

Abstract

The amount of boron contained in the xylem of Japanese persimmon (Diospyros kaki Thunb.) and ebony (Diospyros ebenum Koen) was determined by inductively coupled plasma (ICP) emission spectrometry and a modified curcumin—acetic acid method. The boron content was compared between the heartwood and sapwood of ebony as well as between a blackened portion (“kurogaki”) and normal portion of Japanese persimmon. The kurogaki contained a higher level of boron than the normal portion of the same individual, although the boron content varied among individuals. Moreover, the boron content of the heartwood of ebony was much higher than that of the sapwood. These results suggest the participation of boron in the blackening of Japanese persimmon. Because both kurogaki and heartwood of ebony are durable to fungal attack, the blackening of Diospyros genus appears to be related to the formation of defensive substances in which boron seems to take part. The convenient curcumin—acetic acid method is an alternative to the ICP method with comparable accuracy.

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Correspondence to Kazuya Minato.

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Minato, K., Morita, T. Blackening of Diospyros genus xylem in connection with boron content. J Wood Sci 51, 659–662 (2005). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10086-004-0696-1

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Key words

  • Boron
  • Curcumin method
  • Ebony
  • ICP analysis
  • Japanese persimmon