Malabar gamboge

Scientific Name :
Garcinia gummi-gutta (L.) Robs. var. gummi-gutta
Synonym(s) :
Cambogia gummi-gutta L.
Local/Common name(s) :
Kudampuli, Malabar gamboge
Family :
Clusiaceae
Habit :
Tree
Flowering/Fruiting Time :
January-September
Habitat :
Evergreen forests, along stream banks, also cultivated
Endemic :
Yes
Status (IUCN) :
Least concern (LC)
Distribution :
South India and Sri Lanka
Nativity :
Indigenous
Uses :
Medicine
Description (Morphology) :

Evergreen trees, to 20 m high, bark 4 mm thick, black, rough, thinly scaly; blaze creamy yellow; exudation pale yellow, sticky; branchlets terete, glabrous, drooping. Leaves simple, opposite, decussate, 7-15 x 2-8 cm, elliptic or elliptic-oblanceolate or lanceolate, base cuneate, or attenuate, apex acute or shortly obtusely acuminate, margin entire, glabrous, coriaceous, shining; lateral 10-16 pairs, pinnate, slender, ascending, prominent, arched towards the margin forming intramarginal nerve, intercostae reticulate, faint; petiole 5-20 mm long, stout, channelled above, ligulate process at the base small, glabrous. Flowers polygamodioecious, yellowish-white; male flowers: 3-5 in short axillary fascicles; pedicels 7-15 mm long, thickened towards tip, often reflexed; sepals 4, fleshy with membranous margin, coriaceous, ovate or obovate, outer 2 smaller than inner; petals 4, twice as long as the petals, concave with narrow membranous margin; stamens 10-20 or more, inserted on a short convex receptacle, monadelphous, forming a globular head; anthers ca. 0.5 mm long, basifixed; rudimentary pistil absent or minute; female flowers: 1-3 in terminal and axillary fascicles, larger than male flowers; pedicels 4-6 mm long; sepals and petals as in male; staminodes 10-20, filaments unequal, connate at base in a ring around the ovary or grouped in unequal bundles; anthers bilocular; ovary superior, globular, 8-10 locular, ovule one in each locule; stigmatic rays 8-10, spreading, free nearly to the base, margin tuberculate. Fruit a berry, ovoid to subglobose, 4-5 cm diameter, yellow or red, 8-10 grooved, grooves ending about the middle, pericarp very thick, fleshy; seeds 6-8, ovoid, compressed, pale brown, veined; aril succulent, white or red.

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