T. peltata, or drum wood is also known as Jacot chamber pot, or Sam Zako pot in Mauritian Creole. It is a large shrub of 6 meters but can reach up to 12 - 15 meters high. The stems are grey-brown, the leaves are tapered and wavy with long petioles ranging from yellow to pink. The species is distinguished by its flowers and fruits which are irregular in shape and are borne directly on the trunk. The fruit are brown and contain black seeds which are in an orange pulp.
This species is endemic to Mauritius and found in the intermediate and upland forest, it is one of the native pioneer plants. The flowers attract pollinators such as day gecko and flies, the seeds are dispersed by birds and regenerate naturally in the wild.
The species is listed as ‘Endangered’ on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Its population was initially reduced due to deforestation, which has historically been replaced by agricultural development. Today, regeneration is difficult because deer eat young shoots and leaves. It grows in protected areas southwest of Mauritius.
The fruit looks like a brown chamber pot, hence its vernacular name.