Gaab or Indian persimmon (Diospyros peregrina, family : Ebenaceae) is a short to medium-sized evergreen tree with spreading branches and dense leaves. Bark is blackish. The nice canopy-holder tree can be seen from Southeast Asia to Australia. It is found everywhere in Bangladesh.
At the end of spring, the extraordinary red-brown leaves appear. This is one of the main characteristics of the plant. The entire tree looks great at that time. Leaves are simple, dark green, hard, smooth on upper side, petioled, alternate, lanceolate, 10-20 cm long and 4-7 cm wide. Leaves grow thickly on black branches.
Flowers are white, scented, with 4 thick petals; sepals 4. The plant produces flowers in March-April. Male and female flowers bloom separately. Female flowers usually grow singly from leaf axil while the male ones bloom in cluster on cyme inflorescence. 2-7 male flowers bloom together, while female ones bloom as singles on leaf axil. Male flowers are bigger and whiter than the female ones. The fruit with calyx is berry, round, fleshy and yellow when ripe. They are 4-5 cm wide. Seed 4-8. Propagation of the plant is caused by seeds.
Immature fruits are used to dye fishing nets. The fruits are frequently eaten by village children as well as the birds. Tinduk and Kalskondho are its Sanskrit names. Bark, fruits, seeds and leaves are used as medicine for the treatment of stomach, menstruation, dysentery, diabetes, salivate etc.
Guloncho or Heart-leaved moonseed ( Tinospora cordifolia , family: Menispermaceae) is a deciduous creeper with hard and long stem, climbing other trees or fences. Bark on the stem is as thin as paper. Aerial roots come out of the stem when the plant grows older. The plant is found everywhere in Bangladesh except southern part. It is also native to South and Southeast Asia. Common names: Heart-leaved moonseed, Guduchi, Giloy, Guloncho, Guroncho, Padma guloncho. Leaves are simple, green, alternate, cordate, 6-15 cm long and 5-13 cm wide. Inflorescence, growing from the axil of leaflet branches, bears yellow flowers. Male and female flowers bloom separately. Sepals 6, arranged in two rows, petal 6, pistils 3. Fruit is a drupe, brilliant red when ripe. This attractive fruit is inedible to human. What an extensive climber! Tinospora cordifolia is used in weakness, tastelessness, rheumatis
Kulekhara or Talmakhna ( Hygrophila auriculata , family: Acanthaceae) is a stout and erect herb with straight and undivided stem. The spiny plant is very popular as a medicinal plant in Bangladesh as well as the Indian subcontinent. Other names: Kulekkha, Kuiley-rekha, Kanta kalika, Shoolmordon. Leaves are lanceolate, subsessile, acute at both ends with long whitish hairs, dense with straight and stout thorns that grow from each node. Outer leaves are longer than the inner ones. Both leaves and thorns remain in upward direction. Flowers in axillary whorls. They are bright violet or bluish purple and red, sometimes whitish with soft and minor hair, corolla 2-lipped. Flower blooms in the winter. Fruit a capsule, 4-8-seeded. Seeds are ovoid (not in the pic). The body of the plant contains alkaloids, phytosterols, stigmasterol, lupeol and essential oils. Its seeds contain oil, enzymes and sterols. The plant is cooling and diuretic in cases of h
Makal or Mahakal ( Trichosanthes tricuspidata , family: Cucurbitaceae) is a woody climber with tendril and branches, attaining a height of 10-12 m. The multiangular-branched plant climbs up very far by holding any tree in the forest. It is found in the hilly areas as well as plain forests and village thickets in Bangladesh. It is also found in Indian subcontinent, Australia and some countries of South and Southeast Asia. According to ancient Sanskrit scriptures the other names of the plant are Bishala, Mohendro-baruni. In the Himalayas it has been seen at an altitude of 5000 feet. There are many refferences to the fruit in Bangla and Sanskrit literature. Someone is very nice to look at but he/she is useless--writers usually jokingly give examples of this fruit. Its roots and attractive fruits are packed with medicinal properties. The size and shape of leaves may vary. These are multilobed or trilobed, alternate, rough in both sides, 5-12 cm long, petioled, cor