Maloo Creeper   
Foto info
Maloo Creeper
Photo: Shaista Ahmad
Common name: Maloo Creeper • Assamese: Nak kati lewa • Bengali: Chehur lata, Shimool • Hindi: मालू Malu, Jallaur, Jallur, Mahul • Kannada: Chambolli • Malayalam: Mottanvalli • Marathi: चम्बुली Chambuli • Nepali: भोर्ला Bhorla • Oriya: Siyali • Sanskrit: Asmantaka, Malanjhana • Tamil: Mandarai, Adda, Kattumandarai • Telugu: Madapu, Adattige
Botanical name: Bauhinia vahlii    Family: Caesalpiniaceae (Gulmohar family)
Synonyms: Bauhinia racemosa, Phanera vahlii

Maloo Creeper is the largest creeper in India, and can grow up to 10-30 m long. The woody stem can get as thick as 20 cm. The spreading stout branches are covered with rusty fine hair. The stout tendrils are coiling and occur in pairs. Large leaves are 10-45 cm, 2-lobed with a broad cut. The white flowers, 2-3 cm across, turn yellow when old. The flowers are borne in rounded clusters. They have has 3 fertile stamens and 7 staminodes. Fruit is a flat woody pod with fine rusty hairs, 20-30 cm long. Maloo Creeper is found in the Himalayas, from Kashmir to Sikkim, up to altitudes of 1500 m. It is considered to be a formidable enemy of trees. Flowering: April-June.

Identification credit: Pravin Kawale
Photographed in Lal Bagh Botanical Garden, Bangalore and Maharashtra.
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