Dillenia indica

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Photographs by: Dr. Maulik Gadani

  • Botanical Name : Dillenia indica L.
  • Synonyms : Dillenia speciosa Thunb.
  • Common Name : Elephant Apple, Indian Catmon, Mota Karmal
  • Common Name Details :

    The fruits are relished and seeds are dispersed by wild elephants hence called 'Elephant Apple'.

  • Plant Family : Dilleniaceae
  • Plant Form : Tree
  • Occurrence (Special Areas) : Indroda Park

About Dillenia indica Plant :

  • Habit :
    • Medium to large-sized evergreen tree with rounded crown.
    • Trunk straight, but not high.
    • Branches spreading forming a round, shady head.
  • Leaves :
    • Fascicled at the ends of the branches, oblong-lanceolate, acuminate, 20-30 x 10 cm, sharply serrate, the nerves close, running into the serratures not forking at the margins.
    • Upper surface and nerve beneath are pubescent, petiole 2.5-5 cm, channeled, sheathing.
  • Inflorescence and Flowers :
    • Flowers often exceeding 15 cm in diameter, white, fragrant, appearing with the leaves, usually solitary at the end of each branchlet.
    • Pedicels about 7.5 cm, clavate, round, smooth.
    • Sepals orbicular, concave, thick and fleshy.
    • Petals oblong.
    • Stamens many, the inner ones longer and hard outside, fleshy within.
    • Ovaries 20.
  • Fruit : Hard outside, fleshy within. Seeds many, embedded in glutinous pulp, compressed with hairy margins.
  • Flowering and Fruiting Time : June
  • Significance : Sepals are eaten by natives and addes to syrup as cough mixture.