Putranjiva roxburghii:

Family: Putranjiva belongs to the family of Spurges.

Common Name: It is commonly known as the Lucky bean tree in english and Putinjia in Hindi.

Flowering period: The tree flowers in summer and spring

Habitat: The tree is native to India.

Uses: A decoction of leaves and fruit is taken for the treatment of liver complaints, colds, fevers and rheumatism.  The hard, white seeds of the fruit are often threaded into necklaces, which are traditionally given to children as a protection from disease. An olive-brown, fixed oil is obtained from the seed used for burning. An essential oil is also obtained from the seed. These oils are also used in ayurvedic and herbal medicine. The leaves and fruits of this tree are used in Thai medicine to cure muscle sprains and arthralgia.  The plant as a whole is also used to treat sickness and hemorrhoids. The moderately hard wood is sometimes also used for construction.

Key features: Putranjiva roxburghii is a famous, moderate-sized, evergreen tree, growing up to 12 m in height. It has pendant (hanging) branches and dark grey bark having horizontal lenticels. The tree has dark green shiny leaves with an elliptic-oblong shape and alternate arrangement. The tree has unisexual flowers with short stalks. Male flowers are found in rounded axillary clusters while female flowers are found in groups of 1-3 at the leaf axils. The white fruits of this tree are ellipsoid in shape and velvety in texture. They normally contain a single pointy seed which is very hard to touch.