Assam Sloanea
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Assam Sloanea
D Native Photo: Dipankar Borah
Common name: Assam Sloanea
Botanical name: Sloanea sterculiacea var. assamica    Family: Elaeocarpaceae (Rudraksh family)
Synonyms: Sloanea assamica, Echinocarpus assamicus

Assam Sloanea is a tree, 20-25 m tall, buttressed; branchlets hairless. Leaves are simple, alternate, spiral; leaf-stalks about 3.5-5 cm long, thickened and geniculate at tip, hairless. Leaves are about 12.5-25 x 5-10 cm, obovate or elliptic-oblong or inverted-lanceshaped, wedge-shaped, rounded or somewhat heart-shaped at base, pointed to abruptly short tapering at tip, minutely toothed, hairless or woolly beneath, veins prominent beneath, leathery. Flowers arise in leaf-axils, solitary, or in few-flowered fascicles, about 2-3 cm across, white to yellowish. Flower-stalks are about 2-4 cm long; sepals 4, about 6-9 mm long, unequal, ovate or oblong, woolly; petals 4, about 6-9 mm long, oblong or nearly round, velvet-hairy; stamens numerous; filaments about 2-4 cm long, densely hairy; anthers about 2-3 mm long, style about 5-6 mm long. Capsules are about 4.5-7 cm across, spherical to ovoid, drooping, 5-valved, valves covered with dense pointed stiff spines, about 1-2 cm long. Assam Sloanea is found in East Himalaya, China South-Central, Tibet.

Identification credit: Dipankar Borah Photographed in Behali Reserve Forest, Biswanath, Assam.

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