Shegun or Teak (Tectona grandis, family : Verbenaceae) is a lofty deciduous slow growing tree up to 25-30 m of height with few branches at the top and fluted trunk at the base. It is a tree of South and Southeast Asia. The tree is highly valued for its superb timber used to make different kinds of furni-ture. Teak is one of the best woods in the world. Like other countries it is planted as a ommercial tree in Bangladesh. However, it is also planted in the park, botanical gardens as an ornamental tree. The beautiful tree can be planted by rows on the highway.
In winter it leaves its leaves completely. New leaves grow in the beginning of spring. Leaves are opposite, broadly elliptic, pointed at the end, 20-70 cm long, green, rough above, yellowish beneath, hairy. In the rainy season, white-colored and fragrant flowers cover the entire canopy. Flowers are small, borne on the large terminal panicle. Panicle is seen to be 1-3 feet tall.
The fruit is quadrangular, 3 cm in diameter; bark is thin like paper; outer layer hairy. Seed number 1-2. In the winter, dark brown fruits are seen hanging on the tree. The plant depends on the air for spreading its seeds. It is mentioned in the Veda and Ayurveda as Shak.
Propagation of the plant is caused by seeds and stump cuttings. Its flower and seed are used in blood dysentery, scabies, headache, worm, urinary problem and spraining. Oil of seed is used to prevent balding and promote hair growth. Juice of leaves is used to dye silk thread. A kind of tar is extracted from timber. Its perfumed wood is durable and well-decorated.
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
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
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