Kavalama urens

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Photographs by: Dr. Maulik Gadani

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  • Botanical Name : Kavalama urens (Roxb.) Raf.
  • Synonyms : Sterculia urens Roxb.
  • Common Name : Kadayo, Indian-Tragacanth, Gum Karaya, Indian Gum Tragacanth, Karei
  • Plant Family : Sterculiaceae
  • Plant Form : Tree
  • Occurrence (Special Areas) : Gujarat Forestry Research Foundation, Indroda Park, Ayurvedic Udyan, Van Chetana Kendra, Basan, Aranya Van

About Kavalama urens Plant :

  • Habit : A large tree with white bark, papery and peeling off.
  • Leaves : Palmately-lobed, cordate, hairy beneath, lobes 5.
  • Flowers :
    • Flowers yellow, numerous in dense panicles at the ends of branches when the tree is leafless, pure male and female flowers are very few, all are generally hermaphrodite.
    • Calyx campanulate, hairy, in the freshly opened flowers, the inside of the sepals are a beautiful rich green and with age fade to yellow with a bright red or scarlet central cup, at the base of each sepals there is a small hairy gland.
    • The gynophore is short, and at its base there is a pale-yellowish collar (nectary) of a glandular nature.
    • The corolline cup is as big as gynophore, within the cup are 5 carpels, at the top of the cup the anthers are united into a capitate head, style short, hairy, stigmas pentafid.
  • Fruit :
    • An etaerio of 4-5 follicles, ovoid-oblong hairy (irritant), brown in colour.
    • Seeds 3-6 oblong, black.
  • Flowering and Fruiting Time : December - February
  • Significance :
    • The gum called 'Katila' (Karaya gum) exudes from the bark and used medicinally.
    • The seeds are roasted and eaten.