South-Indian Vatica
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South-Indian Vatica
E Native Photo: Ajit Ampalakkad
Common name: South-Indian Vatica • Kannada: Uggalu dhupa • Malayalam: Adakkapine, Cherupiney, Payinipasa • Tamil: Vella payin
Botanical name: Vatica chinensis    Family: Dipterocarpaceae (Sal family)
Synonyms: Vateria roxburghiana, Vatica sinensis, Vatica roxburghiana

South-Indian Vatica is an evergreen tree, up to 25 m tall, with bole buttressed; bark pale green, smooth; exudation resinous; young shoots, buds scaly. Flowers are bisexual, white, broen in leaf-axils, in spreading panicles. Flower-stalks are 5-ribbed; ribs alternating with sepals; sepal-tube is very short, adnate to the base of the ovary; sepals 5, ovoid-triangular, pointed, velvet-hairy. Petals are 5, white, oblong; stamens 15 in 2 rows; filaments short, stigmas densely papillose, obscurely 3-lobed. Leaves are simple, alternate; stipules small, fugacious; leaf-stalk 2-5 cm long, stout, hairless; blade 9-25 x 3-11 cm, ovate or oblong, base blunt or broadly wedge-shaped, tip bluntly pointed, margin entire, leathery, hairless; lateral nerves 10-14 pairs, parallel, prominent, intercostae scalariform, prominent. Fruit is a capsule, scaly, nearly spherical shortly pointed with 3 obscure furrows, finely velvet-hairy; pericarp leathery; sepal-cup persistent. South-Indian Vatica is native to South India and Sri Lanka.

Identification credit: Ajit Ampalakkad Photographed in Ernakulam, Kerala.

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