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ative Photo: Dinesh Valke
Common name: Phalsa • Hindi: फालसा Falsa • Manipuri: ꯁꯟꯖꯦꯜꯍꯩ Sanjelhei • Kannada: ಫುಲ್ಶಾ Phulsha • Telugu: Phutiki • Sindhi: Pharaho • Konkani: Phalsi • Gujarati: Shukri • Sanskrit: Mriduphal म्रदुफल • Oriya: Pharosakoli • Malayalm: Chadicha • Tamil: உந்நு Unnu • Urdu: Falsa ﻓﺎﻟﺴﺎ
Botanical name: Grewia asiatica    Family: Tiliaceae (Phalsa family)

Phalsa is a shrub or small tree which can grow upto 12 feet high. Its bark is greyish-white or greyish-brown. Leaves with serrated margins vary from broadly heart-shaped to obliquely ovate. The flowers are yellow about 2 centimeters in length, and borne in densely crowded (rarely solitary) axillary cymes. The fruit is edible, rounded, small dark blue to almost black when ripe, sweetish and somewhat acid, with a fairly good flavor and each drupe contains a rather large seed. The fruit is eaten raw with relish and sold in Delhi lanes in summers, with great enthusiasm by singing hawkers.
Medicinal uses: The fruit is supposed to possess astringent, cooling and stomachic properties. A spirit is distilled and a pleasant sherbet is made from it. The leaves are used as an application to pustular eruptions. The Santals prescribe the root-bark for rheumatism. In Sind an infusion of the bark is used as a demulcent.

Identification credit: Dinesh Valke Photographed in Maharashtra.

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