Flora of the Nilgiris

Family : Cochlospermaceae
Flora of Nilgiri Biosphere (Eastern Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve)
Flora of Nilgiri Biosphere (Northern Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve)

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Cochlospermum religiosum (L.) Alston

Leaf arrangement

Alternate distichous

Leaf Type

Simple

Leaf Shape

Palmately lobed

Leaf Apex

Acute

Leaf Base

Chordate

Leaf Margin

Entire

Habit : A medium sized deciduous tree.

Habitat and Distribution : Occasionally found in deciduous forests of the lower slopes, in grassy areas and close to cliffs. Less common on the West coast from 300-900m. Western sub Himalayan tract from the Sutlej eastwards; drier parts of the Peninsula.

Indigenous Information : Leaves are eaten by the sambar dear. Bark is used for the preparation of medicines. The immature fruit is cut at the top and inner material is removed. A flour of ragi and gram with jaggery is put inside the shell. The opening is sealed with the cut piece. This is put into the fire and cooked. The cooked mixture is given to cure tumours of the stomach. Being a softwood tree, it falls easily in the wind.

Field Tips : Leaves glabrous above, densely brownish tomentose below. Flowers with prominent sepals. Flowers when all the leaves have fallen.

 

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Names:

English : Buttercup Tree, Yellow Silk Cotton Tree
Irula : Bettatha avarai
Tamil : Tanaku, Kongillane
Hindi : Galgal
Malayalam : Appa kudukka
Kannada : Baruga

Flower:

In terminal panicles, bright yellow. Flowering from February-April.

Fruit :

A capsule, obovoid, three to five valved, brown. Seeds many, surrounded by pale white cottony hair. Fruiting from March-June.

All from Cochlospermaceae
Flora of Nilgiri Biosphere (Eastern Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve)
Flora of Nilgiri Biosphere (Northern Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve)