Description from Flora of China
Machilus micrantha Hayata, Icon. Pl. Formosan. 2: 130. 1912; Cinnamomum kanehirae Hayata; C. micranthum f. kanehirae (Hayata) S. S. Ying; C. xanthophyllum H. W. Li.
Trees, 14-20(-30) m tall, (25-)40-50(-65) cm d.b.h. Bark rigid, up to 4 mm thick, black-brown or reddish brownish gray outside, brown inside, irregularly and longitudinally fissured. Branchlets tea-brown, terete, longitudinally striate when dry, scattered with convex orbicular lenticels, young ones not lenticellate, ± compressed, glabrous. Terminal buds large, ovoid, ca. 6 × 5 mm; bud scales densely imbricate, broadly ovate, brown sericeous-pubescent, apex obtuse or apiculate. Leaves alternate, always inserted on upper part of young branchlets; petiole tea-brown, 2-3 cm, plano-convex, glabrous; leaf blade yellow-brown abaxially and yellow-green adaxially when dry, oblong-elliptic or ovate-elliptic, 7.5-9.5(-10) × 4-5(-6) cm, papery to subleathery, glabrous on both surfaces, pinninerved, lateral veins 4 or 5 pairs, arcuate-ascendant, anastomosing within leaf margin, lateral veins and midrib conspicuous on both surfaces, axils of lateral veins dome-shaped and puberulent abaxially, bullate adaxially, transverse veins and veinlets reticulate, foveolate on both surfaces, base broadly cuneate to subrounded, ± slightly asymmetric on sides, margin cartilaginous and involute, apex shortly acuminate. Panicles tea-brown when dry, terminal and axillary, short, 3-5 cm, subglabrous or slightly puberulent at base, branched almost from base; branches patent, ca. 2 cm, terminal one bearing a cyme. Pedicels ca. 2 mm, slightly dilated at base, glabrous. Flowers white or purple-red, scented, ca. 2.5 mm. Perianth glabrous outside, densely villous inside; perianth tube campanulate, ca. 1.2 mm; perianth lobes 6, narrowly ovate, ca. 1.3 mm, obtuse at apex. Fertile stamens 9, ca. 1 mm; filaments villous at base, a little longer than anthers, complanate, those of 3rd whorl each with 2 shortly stalked suborbicular-reniform glands near base, others glandless; anthers broadly oblong, 4-celled; cells lateral-introrse (of 1st and 2nd whorl) or lateral-extrorse (of 3rd whorl). Staminodes 3, including stalk ca. 0.8 mm, triangular-subulate; stalk ca. 0.4 mm. Ovary ovoid, ca. 0.6 mm, abruptly attenuate into a ca. 0.6 mm long style; stigma capitate. Fruit shiny, greenish when fresh, ellipsoid, 1.5-2.2 × 1.5-2 cm, maculate, glabrous; perianth cup in fruit urceolate, ca. 9 mm, column base ca. 2 mm long and broad, abruptly dilated into a trumpet toward apex, trumpet ca. 9-10 mm wide, margin entire or undulate. Fl. Jul-Aug(-Oct), fr. Oct.
This species is nearly always mixed with Cinnamomum parthenoxylon in forests, but it is easily distinguished by its bark and leaf color and short panicle.
Dense forests on mountain slopes or in valleys, roadsides, riverbanks; 300-700 m (to 1800 m in Taiwan). Fujian, Guangdong, Guangxi, Guizhou, Hainan, Jiangxi, Taiwan [N Vietnam].