Botanical Survey of India | Flora of India

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Luvunga eleutherandra Dalz. in Hooker's J. Bot. Kew Gard. Misc. 2: 258. 1850; Hook. f., Fl. Brit. India 1: 509. 1875; Mohanan et al. in J. Econ. Tax. Bot. 5: 457. 1984. L. sarmentosa auct. non (Blume) Kurz: Gandhi in C. J. Saldanha & Nicolson, Fl. Hassan Dist. 386. 1976.

Large, woody liana; branches strong, cylindric, glabrous, armed with axillary, recurved spines (ca 2.5 cm long); bark greyish, smooth or lenticellate as in older stems, often with scattered oil dots. Petioles 2.5 - 6 cm long, grooved above, glabrous; leaflet blades elliptic-oblong or obovate, acute at base, abruptly and obtusely acuminate at apex, entire along margins, 6 - 16.5 x 2.5 - 6 cm, coriaceous, prominently gland dotted on both surfaces, glabrous; petiolules short, ca 5 mm long; secondary nerves 5 - 8 pairs, prominulent, oblique, sometimes forming an indistinct intramarginal loop. Inflorescences racemose or paniculate, up to 3 cm long; peduncles puberulent; pedicels ca 5 mm long, puberulent. Flowers small, 5 - 10 mm long (ripe buds). Calyx cupular, entire or obscurely 4-lobed, 1.5 - 2.5 mm long, glandular, puberulent. Petals oblong, obtuse, fleshy, ca 4 x 2 mm, glandular, glabrous, white. Disk annular or cupulate, ca 0.5 x 1.5 mm, fleshy, glabrous. Stamens 8, shorter than petals, all free; filaments linear-subulate, glabrous; anthers ca 3 mm long, linear, apiculate, ca 2 mm long. Ovary long-ovoid, ca 1 mm long, glabrous, 3-locular; each locule with 2 superimposed ovules; style continuous with ovary, short, thick, ca 1.5 mm long, glabrous; stigma capitate. Fruiting pedicel 10 - 15 mm long, glabrous. Berries oblong-ellipsoid, to 2.5 x 1.5 mm, warty or tubercled, yellowish when ripe, 3-locular;each locule with 2 or 3 seeds.

Fl. Dec. - Jan.; Fr. Feb. - june.

Distrib. India: Evergreen forests of the W. Ghats, up to 900 m. Maharashtra, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and Kerala.


Notes. Stem bark and leaves are used for aches and rheumatism. An exudate from the stem is applied in tooth-ache.

Following Tanaka (in Meded. Rijks-Herb. 69: 1 - 13. 1931) L. eleutherandra is treated here as distinct from L. sarmentosa (Blume) Kurz (= Triphasia sarmentosa Blume) which enjoys a far wider distribution in Malay peninsula, Java, Sumatra, Borneo and New Guinea, and is characterised by smaller leaflets with obscure venation; smaller flowers with free very hirsute filaments and smaller fruits with a small persistent calyx.


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