Daruhoridra or Narrow-leaf morinda (Morinda angustifolia, family: Rubiaceae) is a shrub or small tree with soft branches attaining a height of 2 to 6 m. The evergreen plant is mostly found in the Shal forests, the Sundarbans and in coastal areas. It is also planted in the garden and parks. Indian subcontinent and China are its original home.
Leaves are dark green, lanceolate, dented, 10-30 cm long and 4-5 cm wide, tip pointed.
Flowers are showy, pure white, scented, tubular in the lower part, clustered on head inflorescence. Sepals 5, petals 5. flowering occurs throughout the year.
Fruits are very peculiar, composite. Each fruit seems to have one eye! The fruits become purplish when ripe. Propagation of the plant is caused by cutting and seed.
The plant has medicinal quality and used in asthma, common cold, vomiting and dysentery. It is also used to cure wound and regain energy. Bark and root are used in urinal problems. A kind of yellow color is made from its roots and used to dye carpet and fabrics. And for this reason the Bengali name of the plant is Daruhoridra.
Other local names: Borophul, Bon horidra, Bonomali, Bonshak, Horinar phul, Holdiruk, Jongli bonshak, Pandugi, Pandopi, Pandushi, Rong-gachh.
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
Maloncho or Alligator weed (A lternanthera philoxeroides , Amaranthaceae) is an aquatic or semi-aquatic perennial herb rooting at nodes. Stem is juicy, slender and hollow. So the plant can easily float on the water. Other names: Heycha, Hechi-shak, Burma-shak, Bormi-shak. Though the floating plant is found everywhere in Bangladesh, surprisingly it is native to Brazil. In the far past it has been introduced to the subcontinent and Southeast Asia. Flowers are very small, white, on head inflorescence, petals 5. Peduncle is very long. Leaves are green, slightly serrated, linear, elliptic-lanceolate, 3-8 cm long, opposite, acute at the end. Fruit an utricle, ovoid-orbicular or obcordate. Seed is inverse, lenticular, single-seeded. Flowering occurs in the rainy season. Propagation is caused by cutting or seeds. It grows in damp places, near pond and canal etc. Leaves are eaten as vegetables. It is energizing, emollient and reputed to induce
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