Paniaphul or Hopbush, Dodonaea viscosa

Paniaphul or Hopbush (Dodonaea viscosa, family: Sapindaceae) is a large shrub or small-sized evergreen tree, attaining a height of 2-8 m. It is usually the size of a shrub. But sometimes it takes the form of a small tree, though it is rare. It usually prefers to grow in sandy soils washed in salt water. It is mainly found in the coastal regions, especially on sandy beaches of South-eastern region of Bangladesh. Its geographical extent is very wide. It is found througout the tropical and subtropical regions of the world.

Other names: Aliar (Bang); Sticky hopbush (Eng).

The shape of the leaves vary. These are elliptic-obovate or lanceolate, 4-14 cm long and 2-4 cm wide, entire, alternate, petiolate or sessile, apex rounded or acuminate; sticky and leathery.  

Flowers are in widely branched inflorescence (3-4 cm long). These are yellow, bisexual or dioecious (female and male flowers are in separate plant). Fruits are capsule, 1-1.5 cm wide, yellow to orange or red, 2-4-winged, membranous. Seeds are blackish or brownish. 

Its flowers and fruits are found almost round the year. It is propagated by seeds or cuttings.

Leaves are used in fever and toothache and as fish poison somewhere. Wood can be used for fuel. It can be used to make machinery handles and hand sticks also.

Pics of the plant are taken from Cheradeeep of St. Martin's Island

The species name Viscosa is derived from its sticky or membranous leaves and fruits.

Synonyms: Dodonaea arabica, Dodonaea aspleniifolia, Dodonaea bialata, Dodonaea candolleana, Dodonaea cuneata, Dodonaea dioica, Dodonaea ehrenbergii, Dodonaea eriocarpa, Dodonaea fauriei, Dodonaea forsteri, Dodonaea illita, Dodonaea jamaicensis, Dodonaea kohautiana, Dodonaea latifolia, Dodonaea linearifolia, Dodonaea lucida, Dodonaea microcarya, Dodonaea neriifolia, Dodonaea ovata, Dodonaea pallida, Dodonaea pauca, Dodonaea paulinia, Dodonaea pentandra, Dodonaea repanda, Dodonaea sandwicensis, Dodonaea scabra, Dodonaea spatulata, Dodonaea stenoptera, Dodonaea thunbergiana


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