TALLOWTREE

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TALLOWTREE (stillingia sebifera)* This interesting tree is a native of China. It belongs to the natural family euphor^ biacecB. The branches are long and flexible ; the foliage so much resembles that of the Lombardy poplar, that it might readily be mistaken, were the leaves serrated. The flowers are inconspicuous, and disposed in straight, terminal spikes. The capsules are hard, smooth and brown, divided internally into three cells, each containing a nearly hemispherical s^ed, which is covered with a sebaceous and very white substance. At the close of the season, the leaves turn bright red, and as the capsules fall off, leaving the pure white seeds suspended to filaments, the tree presents a very beautiful appearance. From a remote period, this tree has furnished the Chinese with the material out of which they make their candles. The capsules and seeds are crushed together, and boiled ; the fatty matter is skimmed as it rises, and condenses on cooling. The candles made of this substance are very white; and red ones are also manu factured by the addition of vermilion. Sometimes, three pounds of linseed oil and a little wax are mixed with ten of this substance, to give consistence. The tallowtree is cultivated in the vicinity of Charleston and Savannah, and, indeed, is almost naturalized in the maritime parts of Carolina.