Pongamia pinnata (L.) Pierre

  • Family : FABACEAE
    (Pea Or Bean Family)
  • Family (Hindi name) : PALASH FAMILY (पलाश फैमिली)
  • Family (as per The Plant List) : LEGUMINOSAE
  • Subfamily : Faboideae
  • Basionym : Cytisus pinnatus L.
  • Synonym(s) : Pongamia glabra Vent.; Galedupa indica Lam.; Derris indica (Lam.) Benn.
  • Species Name (as per The Plant List) : Pongamia pinnata (L.) Pierre
  • Common name : Indian Elm, Pongam oil tree, Indian beech wood tree
  • Vernacular name : Karanj (Hindi); Hongemara (Kannada); Pungam, Ponga (Tamil); Gaanuga, Kanuga, Pungu (Telugu); Karanjo (Oria); Karanja (Sanskrit); Minnari, Ungu, Ponnam, Pungu, Punnu, Pongam (Malayalam)
  • Habit : Tree
  • Habitat : Deciduous forests, also planted as avenue tree
  • Comments / notes : A sacred tree; gaining popularity as a source of biofuel from the seed kernel; common along water courses to 1000m.
  • Key identification features : A medium-sized decidious tree. Leaves are imparipinnate with 2-3 pairs of broad leaflets, often seen with Galls. Flowers are in short clusters, pea-like and whitish-pink. Fruit is a flattened, oval, woody pod that dehisces at both ends. Bark smoke-grey and smooth.
  • Flower, Fruit : April-December
  • Collection Nos : KFP 2573, KFP 11618, HFP 2080
  • Native : Southern and Eastern Asia, Australia
  • World Distribution : Indo-Himalayas, Sri lanka, Myanmar, Malaysia, Northern Australia, Polynesia, Mascarene Islands, Micronesia
  • Conservation Status : Least Concern (LC)
  • Literature : Pullaiah et al., 2001 - Flora of Eastern Ghats Vol. 2; J.L.Ellis, 1987- Flora of Nallamalais Vol. 1; H.O. Saxena & M. Brahmam, 1994- Flora of Orissa Vol. 1; R. S. Rao and S. H. Sreeramulu, 1986 - Flora of Srikakulam District; H. O. Saxena and M. Brahmam, 1989 - The Flora of Similipahar (Similipal), Orissa; IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2014.1. ; N.P.Singh, 1988. Flora of Eastern Karnataka; Matthew, K.M., Flora of Tamil Nadu Carnatic, Vol.3 (1). Diocesan Press, Madras. 1983; Flora of Karnataka, Saldanha, 1984; Balakrishna Gowda & A.N. Sringesh 2004 – Sringeri (checklist unpublished); Ramaswamy & Razi, 1973 - Flora of Bangalore district, Karnataka state; Rao & Razi, 1981 - Mysore; Keshava Murthy & Yoganarasimhan, 1990 - Flora of Coorg district, Karnataka state; Gopalakrishna Bhat, 2003 - Udupi; Manjunath et al., 2003 - Davanagere; Gopalakrishna Bhat, 2014 - Flora of South Kanara; Sasidharan, N. 2011. Flowering plants of Kerala. DVD, V 2, KFRI; Henry, Kumari & Chithra (1983). Flora of Tamil Nadu, India vol. 1.
  • Citation : Sankara Rao, K., Raja K Swamy, Deepak Kumar, Arun Singh R. and K. Gopalakrishna Bhat (2019). Flora of Peninsular India. http://peninsula.ces.iisc.ac.in/plants.php?name=Pongamia pinnata. Downloaded on 12 July 2020.

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