Pandua Magnolia
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Pandua Magnolia
D Native Photo: K.L. Chaudhary
Common name: Pandua Magnolia
Botanical name: Magnolia punduana    Family: Magnoliaceae (Magnolia family)
Synonyms: Michelia punduana, Sampacca punduana

Pandua Magnolia is a mid-sized tree attaining a height of 25m. It is named for the place Pandua in Bangladesh. The leaves are 6-13 x 2.5-5 cm, oblong, elliptic, obovate or inverted-lanceshaped, shortly and abruptly tapering with a wedge-shaped base. Leaves are leathery and hairless on both the surfaces, shining above and pale beneath with 8-12 nerves on either side. Reticulation is open and visible on both the surfaces. The leaf-stalk is 1.5-1.8 cm long. lower bud initiation starts from September and each bud measures 2.0x1.25 cm. Flowers are borne in leaf-axils, fragrant, yellowish white in colour and are made up of three whorls of three tepals each. The tepals of the outer and the middle whorls are slightly larger measuring 2.7x1.4 cm compared to that of the inner whorl which measures 2.45x0.8 cm. The carpel measures 1.2cm which gives rise to ovules and is surrounded by numerous stamens which gives rise to pollens. The fruit is an aggregate of 3-20 follicles that measures 3-12 cm. The follicles are reddish-green in colour with distinct lenticels that measures 7-8 mm in diameter which dry at maturity and split open at one side. Each follicle contains 1-2 reddish seeds with fleshy seed coat/aril. The seeds are 5-7 mm long, oval-ellipsoid or ellipsoid and black in colour. Pandua Magnolia grows in sub-tropical broadleaved forests of NE India (Assam, Meghalaya, Nagaland), Bhutan and Bangladesh, up to an elevation of 1500 m. Flowering: October-November.

Identification credit: K.L. Chaudhary Photographed in Cherrapunjee & Pynursla, East Khasi Hills, Meghalaya.

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