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Family: Mimosaceae (Touch-me-not family)
Genus: Adenanthera
Botanical name: Adenanthera pavonina
PLANT NAME IN DIFFERENT LANGUAGES
Sanskrit: Ksharaka, kunchandana, Tamraka
Hindi: Rakt chandan
English: Coral-wood, Barbados pride
Malayalam: Manchadi
MEDICINAL PROPERTIES
Coral Wood or Red sandalwood tree, is a deciduous, spreading, fast-growing, branchless tree, 18-24m in height and 2.0-2.4m in girth, found in the sub Himalayan tract, ascending up to an altitude of 1,200m in Sikkim, West Bengal, Assam, Meghalaya, Gujarat, Maharashtra, South India and in the Andamans. The bark and dark brown or grayish brown and rough on the old tree, and the wood is white or brownish white inside. Adenanthera pavonina leaves are bipinnate, 20-30cm long, with alternate leaflets, which are papery, elliptic-oblong, obtuse and glabrous. Flowers are yellowish and scented in short-peduncled, axillary racemes, and panicled at the end of branches. Pods are narrow and measure 15-20cm in length. On maturation, the pods twist to open and expose 8 to 12 seeds. Adenanthera pavonina seeds are scarlet colored, hard and shining, and are used as beads in jewelry. The seeds are very consistent in mass, and 4 seeds roughly make up 1 gram. Adenanthera pavonina seeds also possess medicinal properties and are used in the treatment of rheumatism. The seeds are also cooked in Java, for human consumption with rice. Powdered Adenanthera pavonina seeds can also be used as red pigment. The seeds require scarification and boiling in water for about one minute for successful germination.
In traditional medicine, a decoction of the young leaves and bark of Manchadi is used to treat diarrhoea. Also, the ground seeds are used to treat inflammation. Preliminary scientific studies appear to support these traditional uses.
Coral Wood
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