Chandmala or Water snowflake, Nymphoides indica

Chandmala or Water snowflake (Nymphoides indica, family: Menyanthaceae) is a fast growing floating aquatic plant. The root of the plant arises from the clay. This mother-plant expands through the roots that grow from stem-nodes. And by this the floating plant can make its length up to 3 meters. They seem to be a colony from a distance. In the colonies, when they begin to bloom, they look like stars. In Bangla, the plant is called Chandmala or Chondromala (group of stars) for this reason.

Other name: Boro chandmala

Heart-shaped floating leaves are simple, shinny green, wavy-edged, 3-10 cm wide; petioled, almost 4 cm long. Flowers are small, white in color with yellow mark at the centre. Petals are quite exceptional, 5-7, with fringe. Flower blooms in rainy season to late outumn. They are short-lived. They can survive only a day. Fruit is globose with many bright yellow seeds. The propagation of the plant is caused by seeds.

It is found in shallow and waterlogged area, like pond, canal, lake, beel, jheel along with some water lilies in Bangladesh.

The leaves contain highly medicinal values. It is used in fever and jaundice. The plant is used to feed cattles for better milking. The original home of the plant is South Asia. 'Pachuli' is the other common name of the plant.


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