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Rubber bot or Indian rubber, ficus elastica

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Rubber bot or Indian rubber (ficus elastica, family: moraceae) is a medium or large evergreen tree with aerial prop roots grow from its branches. The fig tree with milky latex in its leaves and shoots can get a height of more than 30 meters. The trunk is smooth, black-colored and has very tiny whitish spots.


This tree is well-known as an ornamental plant. In Bangladesh, it is found on roadside area or the edge of forest and in parks and gardens. The beautiful tree is native to South and Southeast Asia.


Leaves are spectacular, simple, big, leathery, deep green, sometimes deep purplish, shiny and smooth, elliptic-ovate, 12-30 cm long and 5-12 cm wide, petioled, alternate, acuminate at the top.


Florets remain inside the fruit or fig which cannot be seen from outside. Fruiting occurs in the late spring. Fruits develop in the nodes of  the Fruits. They usually round, sometimes slender in shape. Mature fruits are yellow or red in color. The plant is propagated by seeds and cuttings.

The wow …

Panikola or Duck lettuce, ottelia alismoides

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Panikola or Duck lettuce (ottelia alismoides, family: hydrocharitaceae) is an annual submerged herb grows in the paddy fields and at the edge of water bodies. The short-stemmed aquatic plant prefers shallow water bodies and can survive in strong light. Its roots along with rhizome are ingrained in soil. It is found in the tropical and subtropical Asia, Africa and Australia.
Other Bangla names: Ram korola, Kaobali, Torukola, Shyamkola, Kuchkolai
Leaves grow up with the rise in water level. Size and shape of the leaves are different. They are usually oblong-cordate, slightly clear, fragile, edge undulate. 

The size of the petiole depends on the level of water too. It generally gets a length of 10-20 cm. Peduncle comes out from the rhizome. 

The flower is covered with green spathes in early stage. Mature flower stands erectly on the water. Flower is white or light violet. Sepals 3, petals 3. Flowering occurs in autumn and late autumn in Bangladesh.

Fruit is a capsule, linear. It is edible…

Buddho narikel or Buddha coconut, pterygota alata

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Buddho narikel or Buddha coconut (pterygota alata, family: sterculiaceae) is a large erect tree with branches, reaching up to 50 m in height. Trunk is huge and stout. Bark is smooth and  grey in color. The deciduous mighty tree is found in the hilly forests of Chittagong and Chittagong Hill Tracts and Sylhet of Bangladesh. 

The tree is also found in South India, Sikkim and Andaman Islands. In Bangladesh it is planted in parks and botanical gardens as an ornamental plant. 

Leaves are dark green, big, cordate, glabrous, 10-25 cm long and 7-20 cm wide, alternate; long-petioled: 10-14 cm long. Midrib and veins are clearly visible.

Flowers are reddish inside, outside brownish yellow, scented, petals 5. It produces flowers in spring.


Fruit is big, round, hard, dehiscent, dark brown in color. Seeds are winged, numerous. Fruit pulp tastes almost like Coconut.  

The native plant is propagated by seeds. Seed is edible too. It can be taken after frying. A kind of oil is extracted from seed. It i…

Shitolpati or Murta, schumannianthus dichotomus

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Shitolpati or Murta (schumannianthus dichotomus, family: marantaceae) is an evergreen and erect water-friendly shrub with clump-forming rhizome. Stem is green, smooth and slender, forked at the end. The plant is up to 5 m high. The plant is found in the plain land of some districts of Bangladesh as well as Sylhet and Chittagong area. It is also found in the Indian subcontinent and tropical or subtropical Southeast Asia.
Other Bangla names: Mostak, patibet, patipata, Muktopati
Shitolpati, a gorgeous bed mat is made from the soft bark of this plant. The artistic product has recently been listed in UNESCO World Heritage List. 

Leaves at the top of the long stem. Those are entire, shinny, coriacious, elliptic-oblong, acute at the end, alternate, 15-20 cm long and 5-8 cm wide.

Flowering occurs in winter to spring. Flowers are conspicuous, white, slender, 4-5 cm long, 2-stored, lower lips are bigger. Fruits are multi-angled, dehiscent.


Propagation is by division of rhyzome.

It is cultivated …

Maloncho or Alligator weed, alternanthera philoxeroides

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Maloncho or Alligator weed (alternanthera philoxeroides, amaranthaceae) is an aquatic or semi-aquatic perennial herb rooting at nodes. Stem is juicy, slender and hollow. So the plant can easily float on the water. 

Though the floating plant is found everywhere in Bangladesh, surprisingly it is native to Brazil. In the far past it has been introduced to the subcontinent and Southeast Asia.

Flowers are very small, white, on head inflorescence, petals 5. Peduncle is very long. 

Leaves are green, slightly serrated, linear, elliptic-lanceolate, 3-8 cm long, opposite, acute at the end. Fruit an utricle, ovoid-orbicular or obcordate. Seed is inverse, lenticular, single-seeded. Flowering occurs in the rainy season.

Propagation is caused by cutting or seeds. It grows in damp places, near pond and canal etc. Leaves are eaten as vegetables.

It is energizing, emollient and reputed to induce sleep. It can be found in shallow and stagnant water in beel-jheel, ditches and ponds. The another Bangla na…

Shomudro joba or Sea hibiscus, talipariti tiliaceum

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Shomudro joba or Sea hibiscus (talipariti tiliaceum, malvaceae) is a small bushy tree with many branches and nice curved canopy, attaining a height of  12-13 m. Trunk is grey with many reddish spots. Its roots do not go deep into the soil. 

It is found in the coastal regions of Bangladesh. The evergreen plant is also found throughout the tropical and subtropical sea beaches of the world. It is salt-tolerant and can grow in water logging condition and on coral sands.

Other names : Bhola, Bela, Bola, Chhelba (Bangla), Beach hibiscus (Eng.)
Leaves are cordate with long petiole (up to 10 cm long); soft green in color, whitish green, tomentose below, alternate, coriacious, slightly dented, apex pointed, 8-15 cm long and 8-14 cm wide.

Flowers are large, bisexual, 4-6 cm wide, eye-catching, beautiful, almost like Porosh pipul (thespesia populnea). They are solitary, axillary or terminal, funnel-shaped, yellow with blackish mark at the centre. 

It blooms in the morning but in the afternoon, i…

Korpur or Camphor, Cinnamomum camphora

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Korpur or Camphor (cinnamomum camphora, family: ‎lauraceae) is an evergreen small or medium-sized aromatic tree from cinnamomum family, up to 10 to 15 m high with profuse branches. Trunk is short. Its bark is blackish and rough. Camphor, which is volatile and has a strong aroma, extracted from its bark and wood. 

Its original home is China, Japan and Malay. In Bangladesh it is found in Sylhet area. As an ornamental tree, it is also found in the parks and botanical gardens in the country. 

Leaves are small, elliptic-ovate, entire, veins and midrib are very clear; glabrous, alternate, bearing scent of camphor.

Flowers are brownish white, borne on axillary inflorescence. Female flowers are the bigger than males. Petals 6, arranged in two rows. 

Flower buds with the young shoots are derived from a kind of mound, which is unusual to floral kingdom. Flower blooms in February-March.


Fruit is a berry. The plant is propagated by seeds and air layering.

4-5 kg camphor can be aggregated from a tr…