Showing posts from November, 2019

Boro bet, Osier-like rattan palm, Calamaus viminalis

Boro bet or Osier-like rattan palm (Calamaus viminalis, family: Araceae) is a clump forming spiny large creeper, occasionally takes the form of bushes. Spines are flat and very long. By the support of other plants it climbs. Stem is slender, like most of the canes; brownish and covered with thorny sheath. 

It is found mainly in the hill slopes of Chottogram, Chottogram Hill Tracts and Sylhet. It is also found in the Sal forests of Bangladesh. It has spiny climbing stem or tendrils to climb on; that will be 2-3 m long. Leaf sheath whitish green, pubescent, densely covered with hook-like stout spines. Rachis 1-2 m long. Leaflets are green, lanceolate, 30-55 in per side, alternate.

In Sal forest of Gajipur
Inflorescence is very long, 2-3 m, flagellate. Male and female flowers are borne in different inflorescence; female is shorter than male.

Fruits appear in cluster; berry, usually globose, yellowish or whitish, almost 1 cm in diameter, pointed end, covered with scale-like particles one a…

Jhanjhi or Water thyme, Hydrilla verticillata

Jhanjhi or Water thyme (Hydrilla verticillata, Hydrocharitaceae) is much branched submerged herb with slender stem. The aquatic plant is treated as weed to paddy field in Bangladesh. It is found abundantly in river, haor, canal, beel-jheel and pond in the country. 
Other Bangla names: Kureli, Kanjal.

Leaves are green,  linear, sometimes having  reddish dots or dashes on them, .5-2 cm long, serrate, pointed apex, sessile. Male spathe axillary in one or all leaves of a whorl. Male flowers born in spathe in single. Sometimes 

Flowers can be seen floating in the water when released from the spathe; perianth reddish white. Female spathe with apex, shortly bidentate, perianth slender,long, tubular. Flowering occurs in winter.

Fruit is echinate, smooth or soft. Seeds 2-6, ellipsoid, glabrous, dark brown. The plant is propagated by seeds. It is found in South and Southeast Asia, East Europe, Africa and Australia too.

Apang or Prickly chafflower, Achyranthes aspera

Apang or Prickly chafflower (Achyranthes aspera, family: Amaranthaceae) is an annual herb with woody base, 1-1.5 m height. Terete to quadrangular stem is straight, hairy and not much-branched. It is considered as a crop weed in the country.

Other names: Biral achra, Bilai-khami, Chirchita, Upot lyangra, Bilai-khamchi (Bangla); Snake tail (English).

Leaves are green, simple, ovate-oblong, 10-12 cm long and 6-7 cm wide, opposite, short-petioled. 

Flowers are small, green, on terminal spike inflorescence. Stamens 5, pistils 5. The inflorescence is 10-40 cm long, hard with stipules. Flowering occurs in late autumn. 

Fruit is nutlet, hard with wings. Seeds are brown, sub-cylindrical. It is propagated by seeds. Dry seeds can spread in other ways besides the help of wind. By touching human or animals body they spread far beyond too.

The erect herb is a well-known folk medicinal plant in Indian subcontinent. It is mentioned in the ancient Ayurveda scriptures. Its decoction is used in stangury…

Parul or Fragrant padri Tree, Stereospermum chelonoides

Parul or Fragrant padri Tree (Stereospermum chelonoides, family: Bignoniaceae) is a medium or large-sized deciduous tree with branches, attaining a height of 25 m. Young shoots are pubescent. Bark is grey. 

About this flower, a kind of literary madness has been found for a long period of time among the Bengalees. Although it is mentioned numerous times in Bangla literature, the tree is quite difficult to find in Bangladesh. 

The great news is, 5 of its trees are found in the courtyard of Bangladesh Security Printing Press School in Gajipur. India is the original home of the plant.

Leaves are compound, 60 cm long; leaflets are 5-11, deep green, glabrous, petioled, elliptic-oblong, 10-15 cm long and 3-6 cm wide, apex acuminate, edge serrated.

Flowers are sweet-scented, purplish, yellow at center, campunulate, 3-5 cm long, curved at the base and bronze in color, on terminal panicle; corolla tubular with short petals, petals 5. Flower buds are black and deep purple and it is one of the mo…

Mankochu or Giant taro, Alocasia macrorrhizos

Mankochu or Giant taro (Alocasia macrorrhizos, family: Araceae) is a rhizomatous evergreen herb with soft, smooth and round stem up to 15-18 cm in diameter. Usually it can get a height of 1 to 2 m. It is one of the most popular vegetables in Bangladesh. The perennial plant is found everywhere in Bangladesh, especially in rural areas. 
Common names: Giant alocasia, Elephant ear, Upright Elephant ear.

Upright leaves are gigantic and very attractive too; about 1 m long, green and heart-shaped, dented with pointed or round end, petiole is almost 1 m long covering the stem.

Inflorescence is a spadix, small flowers are covered with spathe. Spathe is divided in to two parts, upper part is 20-25 cm long and the lower is 3-5 cm long. Flower blooms in the autumn (Sep-Oct). Fruit is orange or reddish.

Propagation is by rhizome. It is planted mainly in rainy season. Its fleshy frond and leaves are used as vegetable which is nutritious. 

It reduces constipation, allergy, piles, sore in tongue and e…

Deua or Monkey jack, Artocarpus lacucha

Deua or Monkey jack (Artocarpus lacucha, family: Moraceae) a large tree with large spreading crown, of 12-18 m height. The bark of the deciduous tree is grey and coarse. The type of its fruit reminds us of Jackfruit. It is found in South and Southeast Asia. It is one of the most common trees found in Bangladesh. 
Other names: Delo madar, deyphol, Deuphol, Dehua, Deua cham, Barta, Dalo, Bon kathal.

Leaves are broadly elliptic, entire, rough, brittle, 10-30 cm long and 10-18 cm wide, undulate, back hairy, leathery.

Flowers are small, without petals. Male and female flowers grow on the same inflorescence. Female inflorescence has pedicel, though the male one has none. The fruits come from the female flowers.

Fruit is a syncarp (multiple fruit, which is fleshy), wavy, velvety, bright yellow or orange when ripe, 5-10 cm in diameter. The fruit is sour-tasted but also somewhat sweet. It is eaten raw or pickled. Seed is oblong and white in color.

The plant produces flower in summer. Fruits are…