Fish Berry
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Fish Berry
ative Photo: Smita Raskar
Common name: Fish Berry, Indian berry, Levant nut • Hindi: काकमारी Kakamari • Kannada: ಕಾಕಮಾರಿ Kaakamaari, ಕಾಕಿಸೊಪ್ಪುಗೆಡ್ಡೆ Kaakisoppugedde • Malayalam: anakrytu, anamrytu, garalaphala • Marathi: काकमारी kakmari, kaarvi, kadu-phal • Sanskrit: dhvankshanakhi, garalaphala, kakadani, kakahva, kakamari • Tamil: cantiropam, kakamari, kakanacam • Telugu: kaaka maari, kaaki chempa
Botanical name: Anamirta cocculus    Family: Menispermaceae (Moonseed family)
Synonyms: Cocculus indicus, Menispermum cocculus, Anamirta paniculata

Fish Berry is a large woody climber spreading over large trees. The plant is large-stemmed, up to 10 cm in diameter, the bark is corky grey with white wood. Leaves are simple, alternate, long-stalkes, ovate, heart-shaped. Flowers are greenish in long panicles, arising from the nodes of old stem. The small, yellowish-white, sweet-scented flowers are 6-10 cm across. The fruit produced is a drupe, about 1 cm in diameter when dry. Its crushed seeds are an effective pediculicide (anti-lice) and are also traditionally used to stun fish or as a pesticide. The name "fishberry" comes from the use of the dried fruit as a method of fishing.
Medicinal uses: According to Ayurveda, the plant pacifies vitiated kapha, vata, ulcer, inflammation, chronic skin diseases, bronchitis, cough and used for rapid evolution of uterus.

Identification credit: Navendu Pagé Photographed at Zolambe Dist, Sindhudurg, Maharashtra & Aralam Wildlife Sanctuary, Kerala.

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