Bay Cedar
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Bay Cedar
ative Photo: Prashant Awale
Common name: Bay Cedar
Botanical name: Suriana maritima    Family: Surianaceae (Suriana family)

Bay Cedar is an evergreen shrub or small tree, usually reaching a height of 1-2 m and sometimes reaching 6 m. The leaves are alternate, simple, 1-6 cm long and 6 mm wide. The grey-green, succulent leaves have an aroma similar to that of cedar when crushed, hence the common name. Its yellow flowers are solitary or in short cymes among the leaves. Flowers are yellow, 1.5 cm across when open, with petals 6-10 mm long and sepals 7-10 mm long. Flowers are replaced by clusters of five dry, hard drupes 3-4 mm in diameter. The drupes are buoyant and can maintain the viability of the seeds during long periods in seawater, allowing the seeds to be dispersed via the ocean. Bay Cedar has a pantropical distribution and can be found on coasts in the New and Old World tropics. Flowering: All year.

Identification credit: Prashant Awale
Photographed at Thinnakara Island, Lakshadweep.
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