Family: Rutaceae (citrus family)
Genus: Limonia
Botanical name: Limonia acidissima
Sanskrit: Kapitha, Kapi
Hindi: Kaith
English: Wood apple, Elephant apple, Curd fruit, Monkey fruit
Malayalam: Vilarmaram, Vilavu
Wood apple a large tree growing to 9 metres (30 ft) tall, with rough, spiny bark. The leaves are pinnate, with 5-7 leaflets, each leaflet 25–35 mm long and 10–20 mm broad, with a citrus-scent when crushed. The fruit is a berry 5–9 cm diameter, and may be sweet or sour. It has a very hard rind which can be difficult to crack open, and contains sticky brown pulp and small white seeds. The fruit looks similar in appearance to fruit of Bael (Aegle marmelos).
The Bark, Leaves, Root, Fruits and Gum of Vilarmaram is used for vata, diarrhea, anorexia, vomiting, cough, bronchitis, hiccough, and cardiac debility The fruit is used in India as a liver and cardiac tonic, and when unripe, as an astringent means of halting diarrhoea and dysentery and effective treatment for hiccough, sore throat and diseases of the gums. The pulp is poultice on to bites and stings of venomous insects, as is the powdered rind. Wood apple bark is also used as a cosmetic called thanakha in Southeast Asia. The fruit rind yields oil that is popular as a fragrance for hair; it also produces a dye used to colour silks and calico. In Tamil Nadu leaves and fruit traditionally have been used for elephant food, while the branches were used as brooms for rough work in connection with animal care.
Limonia acidissima
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