Porosh-pipul or Tulip tree, thespesia populnea

Porosh-pipul or Tulip tree (thespesia populnea, family: malvaceae) is a medium-sized evergreen tree, attaining a height of 5-10 m with nice dense canopy. Bark is rough and grey in color. As an ornamental plant it can be planted beside roads. 


In fact it is one of the most beautiful trees of the Indian subcontinent. It is found in the coastal areas in Bangladesh as well as in Africa, tropical Asia, throughout India and Pacific Islands.

Other names: Porosh, Pakor, Pipul, Bolu (Bangla), Portia tree, Umbrella tree.


Leaves are deep green, simple, cordate, 15-18 cm long and 10-15 cm wide, alternate, petiole 4-10 cm long, upside is smooth, grey and fibrous beneath. 


Flowers are beautiful, big-sized, bell-shaped, solitary or in pair, about 8 cm across, pale yellow. Sepals 5, petals 5. 





Flowering occurs mainly in the summer, though flowers can be seen throughout the year. The flower is short-lived, that remain fresh just for one day and turns pink while fading. 





Fruit is a capsule, 2.5-3 cm across, black in color, woody, 4 to 5-chambered, indehiscent. Each chamber of fruit containing a seed. Seeds are globose, hairy. 

Flower and raw fruit are edible. Timber is fibrous, strong, scented and valuable. It is used to make furniture, boat and musical instruments. Yellow dye is collected from its flower and fruit. 

Different parts of the plant (roots, bark, fruit, leaves) are used in dysentery, stomach disorder, rheumatism, heart disease, insect bite and in skin diseases like scabies and ring.    


The species name 'populnea' has been named due to the resemblance to Poplar leaf. The plant is propagated by seeds.