Shet-chondon or Sandalwood, Santalum album

Shet-chondon or Sandalwood (Santalum album, family: Santalaceae) is a medium-sized evergreen tree with upright branches. Bark is dark grey and rough. It is a slow-growing tree. Its trunk increases by 15-20 cm across in 30-40 years! It is considered as a sacred plant.

Its timber is aromatic. Brownish heartwood is strongly scented. Sapwood is white. Indian subcontinent is the original home of the precious plant.

Leaves usually opposite, simple, coriaceous, elliptic, 5-7 cm long, almost acute at the end.

Inflorescence is usually cymose panicle on the axils of leaves at the end of the branches. Flowers are very small, whitish or purplish. Flowering occurs from June-October.

Fruit is a drupe, fleshy, round, violet in color. Seed globose. Propagation is caused by seeds.

Essential oil is obtained from the wood and roots. A kind of viscid oil is also obtained from its seeds too. It is analgesic, diuretic, deodorant and depurative. It is an antidote to gonorrhea, epilepsy, hiccup, pox, abscess, vomiting, whooping cough and pox. It has also been found effective in high blood pressure and menstruation disorder.


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