Dioecious tree, to 30 m or more tall, to ca 60 cm dbh, often moderately buttressed; outer bark coarse, hard, shallowly fissured, reddish-brown; inner bark tan, reddish on its outer surface; branches often spiraled or clustered, extending nearly horizontally; parts when young bearing ferruginous, sessile, stellate pubescence, glabrate in age; sap red, lacking distinctive odor. Petioles canaliculate, 5-10 mm long; blades oblong, acuminate, rounded to acute at base, 9-16 cm long, 1.5-4.5 cm wide, coriaceous; major lateral veins in 20-30 pairs. All parts of inflorescences densely short-pubescent, the trichomes mostly stellate; pedicels ca 1.5 mm long; perianth ca 2 mm long, 3- or 4-lobed usually to middle or beyond, the lobes thick, acute to rounded at apex, spreading at anthesis; staminate flowers in fascicles on panicles to 4 cm long; anthers mostly (2) 3 (6), connate to apex. Pistillate flowers in clusters of 3 to many, in racemes to 5 cm long; ovary 1-carpellate, +/- ovate; stigma sessile, 2-cleft. Capsules ovoid-ellipsoid, thick-walled, light orange, 3-3.5 cm long, bearing dense, short, stellate pubescence; valves 2, woody, ca 5 mm thick, splitting widely at maturity; seed l, ellipsoid, ca 2 cm long, the aril deeply laciniate, red at maturity (white until just before maturity), fleshy, tasty but becoming bitter soon after being chewed. Croat 7488, 8090. Common in the forest, especially in the older forest; probably less abundant than V. sebifera. Flowers from June to March, especially November to February. The fruits mature from April to August (sometimes from February).