Date Plum
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Date Plum
D Native Photo: Abhishek Dutta
Common name: Date Plum, Caucasian persimmon, Lilac persimmon • Hindi: Amlok
Botanical name: Diospyros lotus    Family: Ebenaceae (Ebony family)
Synonyms: Diospyros calycina, Diospyros umlovok, Diospyros mediterranea

Date Plum is a deciduous tree with bark grayish black to grayish brown. Leaf-stalks are 0.7-1.5 cm; leaf blade elliptic to ovate-oblong, 5-13 x 2.5-6 cm, somewhat membranous, below drying green or glaucous and with dark veinlets, base blunt, broadly wedge-shaped, or nearly rounded, tip tapering to pointed, lateral veins 7-10 per side, netveined veinlets clearly defined, flat, and dark. Male flowers are borne 1-3 together; flower-stalks up to 6 mm; sepals 4 or 5; flowers reddish to pale yellow, urn-shaped, about 4 mm, petals 4; stamens 16. Female flowers are nearly stalkless, pale green to reddish; sepals 4; flowers urn-shaped, about 6 mm, petals 4 or rarely 5; staminodes 8; ovary 8-locular, hairless except for tip; styles 4. Fruiting sepals are 4, ovate, tip blunt. Berries are pale yellow, becoming bluish black with a glaucous bloom, nearly spherical to ellipsoid, 1-2 cm in diameter. Seeds are brown, compressed, about 10 x 6 mm in diameter. Date Plum is found in SW Asia, Western Himalaya, China to Korea, at altitudes of 500-2500 m. Flowering: May-June.

Identification credit: Abhishek Dutta Photographed in Poonch, Jammu & Kashmir.

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