Xanthorrhoea Resins. Botany bay gum. Xanthorrhoea hastilis, Xanthorrhoea australis.
Related entry: Grass Tree Gum
Xanthorrhoea Resins. Gum Acaroides. Gum Acroides. Grass-tree Gum. Botany Bay Gum.—Yellow and reddish resinous substances, the products of Xanthorrhoea hastilis R. Br. and X. australis R. Br. (fam. Liliaceae), have been introduced into England from Australia. They are obtained by spontaneous exudation from the stems of the plants, which are usually shrubs. The yellow variety (from X. hastilis) is in tears, in flattish pieces having on one side the mark of the stem, or in masses of various size and irregular shape. It has a reddish-yellow color, resembling gamboge when broken, and when heated emits a fragrant odor like that of Tolu balsam. It contains resin, cinnamic and benzoic acids, and a trace of volatile oil, and may therefore be ranked among the balsams. When heated with nitric acid, it yields a large proportion of picric acid. In medicinal properties it is said to bear a close resemblance to storax and the balsam of Tolu. A tincture, made in the proportion of two ounces to a pint of alcohol, may be given in the dose of one or two fluidrachms. The red variety (from X. australis R. Br.) resembles dragon's blood in color, and appears to be analogous to the other variety in properties. (See A. J. P., 1881; also A. J. P., vol. xv, and D. C., 1895, 83.) These resins have been introduced as a shellac substitute in varnish making.