Artocarpus heterophyllus

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Photographs by: Dr. Maulik Gadani

  • Botanical Name : Artocarpus heterophyllus Lam.
  • The generic name Artocarpus is derived from two Greek words - 'artos' meaning bread and 'karpos' meaning fruit. 

  • Synonyms : Artocarpus integrifolius auct. Non L.f.
  • Common Name : Phanas, Jackfruit
  • Common Name Details :

    The common name 'Jackfruit' is derived from Malyalam word 'jaca'.

  • Plant Family : Moraceae
  • Earlier this plant was placed in family Urticaceae by Bentham and Hooker but as per the modern views it is now placed in family Moraceae which is separated from the family Urticaceae.

  • Plant Form : Tree
  • Occurrence (Special Areas) : Ayurvedic Udyan, Van Chetana Kendra

About Artocarpus heterophyllus Plant :

  • Habit : A large medium-sized evergreen tree with a short trunk and a dense rounded crown of leaves.
  • Stem : Thick dark brown and rough.
  • Leaves : Simple, alternate, stipulate, petiolate, thick, dark green, leathery, elliptic to obovate, acute tip.
  • Flowers :
    • Male and female flowers are borne separately but on the same plant (tree) from the tip of the branches or from the trunk. Male inflorescences are stout and cylindrical found on younger branches above the female inflorescences. Female inflorescences are huge, irregularly oblong or round with strongly scented multiple flowers.
    • Male flowers have tubular calyx, apically 2-lobed, pubescent; filament straight in bud; anther ellipsoid. Female flowers have tubular, hairy calyx, apically lobed with 1-celled ovary.
  • Fruits : It is a multiple aggregate type. It has a green to yellow-green exterior rind. The hard outer covering is derived from the enlarged female flowers. The whitish fibrous pulp within contains many seeds (as many as 500 per fruit).Pale yellow when young, yellowish brown when mature, ellipsoid, globose, or irregularly shaped, with stiff hexagonal tubercles and thick hairs. Inside this compound fruit, there are many true fruits - each consists of a large fleshy, yellow, aril-like perianth (pulp) having a seed in it.
  • Seeds : Smooth, ovoid, reniform.
  • Significance :
    • The ripe fruit may be eaten raw.
    • Unripe fruits are also used as vegetable and for making pickles.
    • Timber is used for making furniture and musical instruments.
    • Heartwood yields a yellow dye.
    • The bark is used for tanning and the leaves are eaten by cattle.
    • The fruits are also relished by the elephants.