Showing posts from April, 2020

Topapana or Water lettuce, Pistia stratiotes

Topapana or Water lettuce (Pistia stratiotes, family: Araceae) is a free floating round-shaped aquatic plant, attaining a length of 10-15 cm. Its submerged roots remain in clusters. The perennial plant looks like Rose or Cabbage. 
Other Bangla name: Tokapana, Pana, Golap-pana, Boro hodi, Bara-pana.

The stemless small plant is found everywhere in shallow water or in the mud of ditches in Bangladesh. Sometimes they are seen floating in the large colonies. It is also found in Indian subcontinent and Southeast Asia.

Leaves are pale green or yellowish, 4-10 cm long, leaf apex rounded with soft hairs. Occasionally their leaves turn yellow; probably due to lack of nutrients from the soil. This can happen by lacking the water also.

Flowers in spathe, from the center of the leaves. They are yellowish green. Fruit is berry, few seeded.  It blooms in summer. It is propagated by stolon and seeds.

The plant is used in purgative, uretic, asthmatic and skin diseases. Many aquatic insects take refuge …

Binna-ghash or Vetiver grass, Chrysopogon zizanioides

Binna-ghash or Vetiver grass (Chrysopogon zizanioides, family: Poaceae) is a perennial aromatic grass, attaining a height of 2 m. Stem is straight. It is found in the water-edges or standing in water all over in Bangladesh. It is also found in South and Southeast Asia.

Other name: Bena khosh-khosh
During the monsoon, when the grass is standing in the water, the green beauty of Bengal gets more beautiful. So as an ornamental plant it can be kept in the aquatic gardens, parks and botanical gardens.

Leaves are long and semi-cylindrical, gradually narrower at the tip. From a distance, of course, in a flowerless state, it looks like Kaash.  

Inflorescence is long, 10-30 cm, and contains many spikelets bearing numerous small yellowish or dark brown flowers. Flowering occus during rainy season. The beautiful grass is propagated by rhizome.

The village people believe that keeping its root in the door will keep the room cool during the summer. A kind of perfume can be made from its root-oil. Th…

Hogla or Southern cattail, Typha domingensis

Hogla or Southern cattail (Typha domingensis, family: Typhaceae) is a aquatic tall grass growing in cluster, attaining a height of 3 m. Stem is simple or terete. The perennial plant is found mostly in Sundarbans, as well as the southern districts in Bangladesh. There they can be seen standing in the water.
Other names: Chel-pata, Kaam, Tara.

It is also found in riverside area, on the edge of cannals and other water bodies of the country. It is also found in India, Northern Africa and Southern Europe. 

Leaves are beautiful, long, semicylindric, clustered at athe base. 
Flowers are small, whitish brown, borne on spikelet inflorescence. Male and female flowers grow on separate inflorescence. Flowers bloom in summer.

Fruits are long, chocolate-colored. When they mature, become divided. The plant is propagated by seeds and gland tubers.

The plant is an economic crop. Mat, fence and roof thach are made of it. It is also used to cover pile of fishes in box which keeps them fresh. Its roots ca…

Pipul or Long piper, Piper longum

Pipul or Long piper (Piper longum, family: Piperaceae) is an annual creeper or trailer with beautiful leaves. It is a very popular medicinal herb of Indian subcontinent. It is found here and there in Bangladesh. It is also found in South and Southeast Asia. Being a quite lovely trailer, it can be planted in the gardens and parks.

Other names: Pipola, Pipul-mool, Pipul-morich.

Leaves are simple, glabrous, dark green, cordate, 5-8 cm long and 4-6 cm wide, petioled, alternate, veins palmately designed. When crused they emit greasy substances which is used as drink and cure for jaundice.

Flowers are slender and upright, whitish green, yellowish or orange, comes from leaf axil, and additionaly it is to said that it comes from the opposite direction of a leaf. Male and female flowers appear on separate plants. Flowering occurs in Autumn.

Fruit is long, green, becomes red when ripe and black when dry. Seeds are round.

Fruit is stomachic, and used to cut weight of body. Fruit mixed with honey …

Nagesshor or Ceylon ironwood, Mesua ferrea

Nagesshor or Ceylon ironwood (Mesua ferrea, family: Clusiaceae) is a medium-sized tree attaining a height of 15 m. It is regarded as one of the most beautiful ornamental trees found in Bangladesh. Angular shape has given the tree a gorgeous look. It is planted in gardens, parks, botanical gardens and in road islands in the country. New leaves and young shoots are brilliant red. As a leafy tree it gives dense shade. So it has a lot of characteristics as an avenue tree. It is originated in South and South-east Asia. It is found in Sylhet, Chottogram and  Chottogram Hill Tracts in Bangladesh.

Leaves are dark green, leathery, narrower, lanceolate, opposite, 7-10 cm long, upperside shinning and lowerside whitish. It gives new leaves round the year.

Flowering occurs in spring. Flowers are spectacular, sweet-scented, 4-8 cm in diameter, white or pinkish white, sepals 2, petals 4, stamens numerous. Flowers are bisexual.

The fruit looks a lot like Acorn. It is round, copper-colored, 2.5 cm in …

Bokul or Medlar, Mimusops elengi

Bokul or Medlar (Mimusops elengi, family: Sapotaceae) is a medium-sized evergeeen tree with dome-shaped crown, attaining a height of 10-15 cm. Trunk is grey, rough and round with spreading branches. Indian subcontinent and Myanmar is the home of the tree.

Common names: Bullet wood, Spanish cherry.
Leaves are alternate, wavy-ended, shiny green above and pale green underneath, elliptic, 8-10 cm and and 4-7 cm wide. New leaves come out in spring.

Flowers are borne in axillary clusters, 1-6 in a bunch, each flower 1.5 cm in diameter. Sepals 5 but petals numerous. Flowers are small, very fragrant, white in color. Its scent is retained even if it dries. Flowering starts from summer and continues up to autumn.

Fruits are oval-shaped, red or orange in color, 2-3 cm long; . 1-2-seeded. Flowers and fruits can be seen at a time. 

Propagation of the plant is caused by seeds. It is a suitable tree fot roadside plantation. Its huge canopy provides pleasant shade in gardens and parks. It can survive …

Shorgo-poddo or Heaven lotus, Gustavia augusta

Shorgo-poddo or Heaven lotus (Gustavia augusta, family: Lecythidaceae) is a small or medium-sized evergreen tree with few branches. Trunk is straight and smooth. The bushy evergreen tree can get a height up to 10 m. Its flower is a spectacular one. Not only that, its flowers are sweet-scented. Its beauty is quite similar to Lotus. That's why it's called Heaven Lotus or Tree lotus.

Other names: Dadra (Bangla), Majestic heaven lotus.
The leaves are crowded at the very end of the stem. Those are deep green, quite big, 30-50 cm long and 10-12 cm wide, glossy, narrow at the base and broader at the end, aternate, serrated, sessile or short-petioled. Young leaves are beautiful, almost bronze-colored. Although the tree has many beautiful features, it should be said, It has an unpleasant odor on its leaves.

Flowers are borne in terminal inflorescence. Those are big and showy, 8-12 cm wide; petals 6-8, one is curved; pink or white, stamens numerous. Though it is quite difficult matter to…