Botanical Survey of India | Flora of India

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Hevea brasiliensis (Willd. ex A.Juss.) Müll.Arg. in Linnaea 34: 204. 1865. Siphonia brasiliensis Willd. ex A.Juss., Euphorb. Gen. 113, t. 12, f. 38B. 1824.

Eng.: Para-rubber; Mal. & Tam.: Rubber-maram.

Trees, 10 - 20 m tall. Leaves long-petioled, digitately 3-foliolate; leaflets elliptic-oblong, cuneate and often oblique at base, acuminate at apex, entire along margins, 12 - 30 x 4 - 10 cm; petiolules 1 - 1.5 cm long, glandular at base. Inflorescences paniculate, 10 - 25 cm long, densely patently pubescent; flowers light yellow; pedicels short, densely hairy; calyx ca 5 mm long, light yellow; lobes subulate from a broad base. Male flowers: 8 – 10 mm long; anthers 10 in 2 series; pistillode caducous. Female flowers: 10 – 12 mm long; ovary densely short hairy. Fruits subglobose, 4 - 5 cm across, trilocular, 1-seeded.

Fl. & Fr. April - Nov.

Distrib. India: Cultivated in plantations in humid tropical areas, sometimes as an escape near plantations in Kerala, capable of natural regeneration. Assam, Manipur, Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Goa and Andaman & Nicobar Islands.

Native of Brazil now cultivated throughout humid tropics of Africa and Asia.

Uses. The latex from the tree trunk produces the natural rubber for wide utilities and commercially highly valuable.

Notes. The germination of seeds in this species is termed as cryptocotylar (i. e. the cotyledons are never completely freed from the seed coat), a feature unique in Euphorbiaceae, probably shared only by another species, Jatropha multifida (Duke, Ann. Missouri Bot. Gard. 56: 125 - 161. 1969).

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