Crescentia alata

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Photographs by: Dr. Maulik Gadani

  • Botanical Name : Crescentia alata Kunth.
  • The generic name is given in honour of Pietro de Crescenzi, an Italian writer on agriculture.

  • Synonyms : Crescentia trifolia Blanco
  • Common Name : Mexican Calabash, Winged Calabash
  • Plant Family : Bignoniaceae
  • Plant Form : Tree
  • Occurrence (Special Areas) : Indroda Park, Aranya Van

About Crescentia alata Plant :

  • Habit : A small treewith long straight branches.
  • Leaves : Alternate, often fascicled 3 or 4 at the nodes, very different in shape and size, some simple, others with one or two or three leaflets on a large, winged rachis and petiole.
  • Inflorescence : Solitary or flowers in pairs, on the trunk and big branches (cauliflorous).
  • Flowers :
    • Smell foetid, yellow marked with green, purple or red veins.
    • Calyx split into 2 lobes.
    • Corolla large, constricted below the middle, swollen above into 5, curved toothed lobes, plicate. Stamens 4 or 5.
    • Ovary superior, 1-celled, placenta 2.
  • Fruit : A big dried up berry, amphisarca, oval or rounded with hard rind, many seeded.
  • Flowering and Fruiting Time : August - October
  • Significance : It is commonly planted in the gardens.