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Jolbahar or Water sprite, Ceratopteris thalictroides

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Jolbahar or Water sprite ( Ceratopteris thalictroides , family: Pteridaceae) is an annual aquatic fern with fibrous roots generated from the slender stipe. It can survive in floating or submerged conditions. Though it grows rapidly in submerged state. Stem and shoots are quadrangular, hollow inside. Stem is almost absent, very small, straight. It is found in shallow swamps and crop fields in Bangladesh. Other names: Khudey dheki-shak (Bang); Indian fern, Water fern, Oriental waterfern, Water hornfern (Eng). Fronds (or leaves) are so diverse in size and shape that differences can be seen in the same plant. These are multilobed, bipinnate or tripinnate. The mutilobed leaves are thick and barren, light green in color. The spore-producing leaves are linear, relatively dark green in color. Fertile fronds (20-90 cm) are longer than barren ones (10-60 cm). Like other land ferns, new leaves, like wrapped trunks, grow from the mother plant. The fast-growing plant is widely planted as an aqua

Chapalish or Monkey jack, Artocarpus chama

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Chapalish or Monkey jack ( Artocarpus chama , family: Moraceae) is a large-sized deciduous tree with buttressed base and milky latex, attaining a height of 30 m. Bark is brownish. Trunk is straight. The characteristics of the fruit is exactly like Jackfruit, but much smaller and rounder in size. It is cultivated for its fruit and wood somewhere. It is mainly found in the hilly forests of Chattogram and Chattogram Hill Tracts and Sylhet division as well as The forest of Madhupur of Tangail district. Its original home is Indian subcontinent.   Other names:  Chambol, Chambul, Cham-kathal, Kanthali-cham, Cham-phol. Leaves are obovate, hairy, dark green 12-18 cm long and 12-16 cm wide, petioled, alternate, edge slightly undulated. The texture of veins and midribs are hard and clearly visible. In young plants leaves are mulilobed and large, can be up to 90 cm long, which is quite different from the mature plants. Flowers on round receptacles, single, axillary. Male and female flowers are p

Jamalgota or Gum plant, Jatropha curcas

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Jamalgota or Gum plant ( Jatropha curcas , family: Euphorbiaceae) is a small-sized deciduous or semi-deciduous tree with soft wood and branches, attaining a height of 6 m. Bark is whitish grey, smooth and shiny; it releases thin scales. On injury it produces a kind of milky substance. The shrubby tree is called Gum plant for this kind of sticky juice. The plant is originated in tropical America and gradually spread to other tropical and subtropical areas. It is found mainly in the medicinal gardens of Bangladesh.  Other names : Chanda, Bag-verenda, Bon-verenda, Shada jeol (Bang); Posion nut, Physic nut, Barbados nut, Bubble bush, Purging nut (Eng).  Leaves are light green, long petioled, cordate at base, and slightly palmate, 10-15 cm long, alternate or opposite, pointed lobes 3-5. The palmate veins have sub-veins. Flowers are yellowish green, small, without any pedicel, gathering at the ends of branches. Female and male flowers are produced separately in the same inflorescence. Flow

Boloch or Bolosh, Balakata baccata

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Boloch or Bolosh ( Balakata baccata , family: Euphorbiaceae) is an large-sized evergreen tree with glabrous body, attaining a height of 30 m. Petiole and young leaves are reddish. Bark is grey. It is found in the hilly areas of Chattogram and Sylhet division in Bangladesh. It is also found in some countries of South and Southeast Asia.  Other names: Chotomol, Kalabel, Kalagota, Koilan, Bila, Billa. Leaves are eye-catching, elliptic-lanceolate, 8-20 cm long and 4-10 cm wide, alternate, acute or blunt. Midrib and veins clearly visible. The midrib starts slightly away from the base. Reddish petioles are 2-10 cm long.  Flowers in terminal inflorescence, yellowish, nice smelling. These are andromonoecious (having male and bisexual flowers in same plant). Flowering occurs in spring.  Fruit is berry, subglobose, fleshy, tastes sweet. These mature in late autumn. Birds love the fruits very much. Seeds 1-2. It is tall and nicely crowned tree and can be planted as ornamental one in parks and

Batul or Swamp willow, Shirakiopsis indica

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Batul or Swamp willow ( Shirakiopsis indica , family: Europhorbiaceae) is a small or medium-sized evergreen mangrove tree with profuse branches attaining a height of 8-15 m. Trunk is thorny. Bark is grey. It is mainly found in the coastal regions of Bangladesh, especially in Khulna, Bagerhat, Bhola, Chattogram and Cox's Bazar. It is also found in several countries in South and Southeast Asia. Other names: Ormei, Hura. Leaves are simple, lanceolate, 5-12 cm long and 3-4 cm wide, alternate, too nmuch veined, midrib clearly visible, edge regularly dented, tip ponted. Petiole 1-1.5 cm long, reddish. Flowers are terminal, in raceme inflorescence, yellowish. Flowering season is late spring.  Fruit is globose, hard, 2.5-3 cm wide. Ripe fruit is blackish. Fruits and seeds are poisonous. The propagation is caused by seeds.  The juice of roots used as purgative and emetic in the treatment of rabies and insinsanity. Immature fruits are used as fish poison. Leaves are used in gonorrhoea. Sy

Kuchila or Nux-vomica, Strychnos nux-vomica

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Kuchila or Nux-vomica ( Strychnos nux-vomica , family: Loganiaceae) is a medium-sized evergreen tree with profuse branches, attaining a height of 15 m. Bark is grey, smooth and thin. Branchlets are  arranged oppositely. It is mainly found in Sylhet and Chattogram Hill Tracts in Bangladesh. In addition, it can be found scattered all over the country. Other names:  Vomiting nut, Strychnine tree, Poison nut tree, Snake wood. Leaves are elliptic, small, 5-8 cm long, short-petioled, opposite; veins 5, clearly visible.  Flowers are small, tubular, 1-1.5 cm long, greenish white, on umbel inflorescence, bad smelling. The bisexual flowers bloom in spring.  Fruit is globose, 4-5 cm in diameter, orange-colored, tastes bittter. The outer shell of the fruit is quite hard, pulp white and soft. Seeds 2-8, poisonous; flat, button-like, hard, whitish grey, hairy. The fruits hang on the tree for a long time. These ripen mainly in winter. The plant is propagated by seeds.  A homeopathic medicine called

Murba or Snake plant, Dracaena trifasciata

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Murba or Snake plant ( Dracaena trifasciata , family: Asparagaceae) is an annual rhizomatous herb without stem. It is one of the most attractive ornamental plants to gardeners that can grow with very little care. The leafy plant is drought tolerant and native to West Africa. As an ornamental plant it is found in gardens, medicinal gardens, parks, offices and road islands in Bangladesh. Other names:  Shutahar, Ghora-chokkro (Bang), Mother-in-law's tongue (Eng). Leaves are long, twisted, thick, stiff, sword-like, 60-90 cm long and 4-6 cm wide, criss-crossed with numerous black and white stripes. A attractive variegated cultivar which is called Laurentii has yellow-colored edges and numerous black stripes.  Flowers are greenish white, scented, clustered on long raceme inflorescence, bisexual. These bloom in spring. Fruits are globose, berry, red or orange, 1-3 seeded. These ripen in the rainy season. Propagation is caused by cutting of leaves and rhizome division.  It is used in bre

Kanaidinga or Indian trumpet flower, Oroxylum indicum

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Kanaidinga or Indian trumpet flower ( Oroxylum indicum , family: Bignoniaceae) is a small-sized deciduous tree with ruddy violet stem, attaining a height of 8-10 m. Trunk and branches are glabrous. Bark is soft and thick, brown-colored. It is found almost all over the country including hilly forests of Chattogram division and Sylhet division and the shal forests of Bangladesh. It is also found in the Southeast regions of Asia.   Other names: Shona (Bang), Indian caper, Broken bones, Midnight horror (Eng); Kotombhar, Priyajeeb, Dirghabrintak, Pitapadap (Sans). Leaves are compound, very large, 1.5 to 2 meters long. Interestingly, its leaves are not only bipinante but also tri-pinnate too. Because sometimes the third rachis holds 3 Leaflets. Leaflets lanceolate, 8-10 cm long and 2-7 cm wide, rounded or slightly cordate at the base, apex pointed, short petioled. New foliage appears on the tree at the end of winter. Night-blooming flowers are  bell-shaped, quite large, pale yellow, petal

Kalobashok or Blue sage, Eranthemum pulchellum

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Kalobashok or Blue sage ( Eranthemum pulchellum , family: Acanthaceae) is a woody shrub with thick branches, with a height of 1-1.5 m. Stem and branches are quadrangular. The color of the flowers is stunning blue. The astonishing abundance of gentian blue has the power to amaze anyone. It can be one of the top picks for decoration of tropical gardens. It is mainly found in Indian subcontinent as well as some countries of Southeast Asia.  Other names: Muralipata (Bang), Blue eranthemum (Eng). Leaves are deep green, opposite, Midrib and veins are clearly visible. Sometimes veins are from same point, which is rare characteristic in plant world, ovate-elliptic, 10-15 cm long, tip pointed, edge dented, sometimes undulated. Petals 5. Propagation of the plant is caused by cuttings.  Tubular flowers are light blue, showy, tube 2.5 cm long, lobes 5. Cup-like sepal is 5-lobed. Flowers bloom at the top of long terminal inflorescence (8-16 cm) with bracts. The overlapping bracts are basically g

Ram-bashok or Tita-phul, Phlogacanthus thyrsiformis

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Ram- bashok or Titaphul ( Phlogacanthus thyrsiformis , family: Acanthaceae) is a perennial erect shrub with large leaves and few branches, attaining a height of 2.5 m. Main stem and branches are quadrangular. It is found at the forest edges of hilly areas of Bangladesh. It is also found in the Indian subcontinent and some countries of Southeast Asia. It can be planted as an ornamental flower in parks and gardens for its dazzling flowers. Leaves are simple, large, lanceolate, 7-20 cm long and 6-8 cm wide, acute at both ends, dark green, petioled, opposite. Upright inflorescence is terminal with many beautiful orange-colored flowers, 12-30 cm long. Flowers are funnel-shaped, 4-4.5 cm long. Flowers bloom in the spring.  Fruit is capsule, 3 cm long, seeds 12-14. Propagation of the plant is caused by seeds. It is used in common cold, fever, asthma, and skin diseases and rheumatism. Its flowers are used as an antidote to pox. Flowers are eaten as vegetable somewhere.  Synonym: Justicia t