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Cinnamon   
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Cinnamon
ative Photo: Aarti Khale
Common name: Cinnamon • Hindi: दालचीनी Dalchini • Tamil: சன்னலவங்கம் Channalavangam, Karuva • Malayalam: Elavangam, Vayana • Telugu: Dasini chekka • Kannada: ದಾಲಚೀನೀ Dalchini • Sanskrit: Darusita
Botanical name: Cinnamomum verum    Family: Lauraceae (Laurel family)
Synonyms: Cinnamomum zeylanicum

Cinnamon is a small evergreen tree 10–15 meters tall, native to Sri Lanka and South India. The bark is widely used as a spice due to its distinct odour. In India it is also known as "Daalchini". The leaves are ovate-oblong in shape, 7–18 cm long. The flowers, which are arranged in panicles, have a greenish color, and have a distinct odor. The fruit is a purple 1 cm berry containing a single seed. Cinnamon has been known from remote antiquity, and it was so highly prized among ancient nations that it was regarded as a gift fit for monarchs and other great potentates. It was imported to Egypt from China as early as 2000 BC, and is mentioned in the Bible in Exodus.

Identification credit: Aarti Khale
Photographed at Jijamata Udyan, Mumbai.
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