Botanical Survey of India | Flora of India

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Garcinia kydia Roxb., Fl. Ind. 2: 623. 1832; Parkinson, For. Fl. Andamans 90. 1923. G . cowa T. Anderson, in Fl. Brit. India 1: 262.1874, p.p. non Roxb. ex DC. 1824.

Asm.: Kuji-thekera, Chopchopa; (Cachar) Hau;. Garo: Tekra, Denga-doti; Kh.: Dieng-soh-longksan; Miri & Abor: Tarak-asing.

Dioecious trees 7 - 20 m tall, elegant with a narrow crown; wood white, turning yellowish, heavy, very perishable; bark blackish brown, rough, cracked, cut exudes a yellow. latex which hardens into a gum; branchlets glabrous, more or less terete, often drooping, dark coloured when dry. Leaves 8 - 15 x 2 - 4 cm, ovate-oblong rarely obovate-oblong to lanceolate, acute at base, acuminate at apex, thinly coriaceous, glabrous, shiny, lateral veins thin but distinct when dry, slender, rather irregular, ca 12 pairs with few intermediate ones, all arched to form an intramarginal vein; petioles 8 - 12 mm long, slightly dilated at base. Male flowers: In small, axillary or terminal umbels of 3 - 5 or rarely solitary, ca 2 cm in diam.; peduncles 10 - 15 mm long; pedicels ca 6 mm long, thick, clavate, glabrous. Sepals 4, 5 - 6 mm long, equal, ovate, obtuse, fleshy, yellow. Petals 4, pale yellow, 10 - 12 mm long, broadly ovate, blunt, thick, concave. Anthers squarish, bilocular, inserted into a slightly 4-lobed mass of short conjoined filaments, dehiscing by 4 clefts. Rudimentary pistil absent or rarely 2-lobed at apex. Female flowers: Solitary, axillary and terminal, sessile. Sepals and petals similar to male flowers. Staminodes 4, small, 3- or 4-fid, alternate with petals, branches gland-tipped, alternate with petals. Ovary globular, sessile, 6 - 8-locular, 6 - 8-lobed; stigmas subsessile, fleshy with 6 8 spreading rays. Berries 2.5 - 5 cm in diam., depressed, with a nipple-like protuberance from apex, on which is inserted the persistent stigma, umbonate, dark purple-brown, 6 - 8-seeded. Seeds oblong, ca 2 cm long; aril soft, acidic, juicy.

Fl. & Fr. Dec. - Aug.

Distrib. India: In tropical forests at lower elevations up to 600 m. Assam, Meghalaya and Andaman & Nicobar Islands; often cultivated for its fruits.

Bangladesh, Myanmar and Malaysia.

Notes. It yields an inferior gamboge. Its fruit is considered as specific for dysentery and also for external application in obstinate cases of headaches.

This species is clearly allied to G. cowa Roxb. ex DC., under which it is sometimes merged. Some botanists have suggested that introgressive hybridization may take place nin areas where both the species occur.

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