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Pongam Tree
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Pongam Tree
ative Photo: Thingnam Girija
Common name: Pongam Tree, Indian Beech Tree, Pongame Oil Tree • Assamese: কৰচ koroch • Bengali: করঞ্জ karanja, করমজা karamaja, কেঞ্জা kenja, কেরাং keram, করচ koroch, পিঠেওড়া pitheora, পিঠেসরা pithesara, পিঠাকাড়া pithakara, তিদিলা tidila • Gujarati: કણઝી kanajhi, કરંજ karanja • Hindi: कलिंग kalinga, करंज karanj, नक्तमाल naktmal, पापड़ papar, पापड़ा papra • Kannada: ಹೊಂಗೆ ಮರ honge mara, ಹುಲಿಗಿಲಿ ಮರ huligili mara, ಕರಂಜ karanja, ತೊನಪೆ Tonape, ಕಾರಾಚ Kaaraacha • Konkani: करंजी karamji, ಕರಿಜೆರೂಕು karinje-ruku, ತೊನಪೆ Tonape • Konkani: करंजी karamji, ಕರಿಜೆರೂಕು karinje-ruku • Malayalam: പൊങ്ങം pongam, പുങ്ങു punnu • Marathi: करंज karanj • Nepali: करेंगी Karengi, कद्जा Kadzaa • Odia: ବୃତ୍ତଫଳ bruttaphala, ଛିତ୍ତି chhitti, କରଞ୍ଜ karanja, କରକ karaka, କରମର୍ଦ୍ଦ karamardda, କରଣି karani, କୋରଙ୍ଗ koranga, ଶାଖ sakha, ଶରଟ sarata, ଶତଘ୍ନୀ sataghni, ସୁଶବୀ susabi, ତିକ୍ତଗୁଞ୍ଜା tiktagunja • Pali: करञ्ज karanja • Punjabi: ਸੁਖਚੈਨ sukhchain • Rajasthani: करंज karanj • Sanskrit: बद्धफल baddhaphala, चिरबिल्व chirabilva, छित्ति chitti, ध्वाङ्क्षवल्ली dhvankshavalli, हस्तिचारिणी hasticharini, हस्तिकरञ्ज hastikaranja, हस्तिरोहणक hastirohanaka, कलिकार kalikara, कपि kapi, करज karaja, करञ्ज karanja, करिकृत् karikrt, क्षुद्ररसा kshudrarasa, महाकरञ्ज mahakaranja, नक्तमाल naktamala, पूतिपर्ण putiparna, षड्ग्रन्था shadgrantha, सरघा saragha, शाख shakha, शार्ङ्गष्टा sharngashta, शष्कुल shashkula, शतघ्नी shataghni, तिक्तगुञ्जा tiktagunja, तीरण tirana, उदकीर्ण udakirna, उदकीर्य udakirya, वल्लकरञ्ज vallakaranja, वनेक्षुद्रा vanekshudra, वर्धफल vardhaphala, वेष्टन veshtana, विद्धपर्कटी viddhaparkati, व्याघ्र vyaghra • Santali: kurunj • Tamil: ஆசிருந்தம் aciruntam, ஆகிரந்தம் akirantam, ஆலம் alam, இலஞ்சி ilanchi, காஞ்சனம் kanchanam, கரஞ்சம் karancham, கேந்திதம் kentitam, கிரஞ்ச மரம் kiranca maram, கொள்ளியம் kolliyam, நகுத்தம் nakuttam, நணந்தம் nanantam, நத்தம் nattam, நத்தமாலம் nattamalam, நீர்ப்புன்கு nir-p-punku, பாற்புங்கு par-punku, பொரிமலர் pori-malar, பொறியமலம் pori-y-amalam, புங்கை punkai, புன்கம் punkam, புன்கு punku, பூந்தி punti, பூதிகம் putikam, பூவந்தி puvanti, தட்டைப்புன்கு tattai-p-punku, உதகு utaku • Telugu: కాడెపుతీగ kaadeputhige, కానుగ చెట్టు kaanuga chettu, కగ్గెర kaggera, క్రోవి krovi, వ్యాఘ్రనఖము vyaaghranakamu • Tulu: ಕೊಂರ್ಗು ಮರ korngu mara, ಪುಂಗು pungu Source: Names of Plants in India
Botanical name: Pongamia pinnata    Family: Fabaceae (pea family)
Synonyms: Millettia pinnata, Pongamia glabra, Derris indica, Cytisus pinnatus

A fast-growing deciduous tree up to 20 metres tall that is thought to have originated in India and is found throughout Asia. It is a deciduous tree that grows to about 15-25 meters in height with a large canopy that spreads equally wide. The leaves are a soft, shiny burgundy in early summer and mature to a glossy, deep green as the season progresses. Small clusters of white, purple, and pink flowers blossom on their branches throughout the year, maturing into brown seed pods. The tree is well suited to intense heat and sunlight and its dense network of lateral roots and its thick, long taproot make it drought tolerant. Flowering: March-April.
Medicinal uses: A thick brownish oil can be extracted from the large seeds, and is used industrially and in medicine, notably for the treatment of rheumatism.

Identification credit: Rita Singh Photographed in Delhi.

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