FoI
Tailed Pepper   
Foto info
Tailed Pepper
ntroduced
Photo: Prashant Awale
Common name: Tailed Pepper, java pepper, cubeb • Hindi: कबाब चीनी Kabab-chini, kabachini, शीतल चीनी Sheetal-chini • Kannada: Balmenasu, Gandha menasu • Malayalam: Val-milaku • Marathi: Mothi, Pimpli • Oriya: Sugandhamaricha • Sanskrit: Renuka, cinatiksna, Chinorana, Kakkola • Tamil: valmilaku, kanakamilaku, takkolam • Telugu: halava-miriyalu, toka-miriyalu • Urdu: Kabab-chini, Shital-chini
Botanical name: Piper cubeba    Family: Piperaceae (Pepper family)

Tailed pepper is a plant cultivated for its fruit and essential oil. It is mostly grown in Java and Sumatra, hence sometimes called Java pepper. It is a perennial plant, with a climbing stem, round branches, about as thick as a goose-quill, ash-colored, and rooting at the joints. The leaves are from 4-6.5 inches long, 1.5-2 inches broad, ovate-oblong, long pointed, and very smooth. Flowers are arranged in narrow spikes at the end of the branches. Fruit, a berry rather longer than that of black pepper. Tailed pepper is native to SE Asia, introduced in India by Arabian traders.
Medicinal uses: Sanskrit texts included cubeb in various remedies. Charaka and Sushruta prescribed a cubeb paste as a mouthwash, and the use of dried cubebs internally for oral and dental diseases, loss of voice, halitosis, fevers, and cough. Unani physicians use a paste of the cubeb berries externally on male and female genitals to intensify sexual pleasure during coitus. Due to this attributed property, cubeb was called "Habb-ul-Uruus".

Identification credit: Vijayadas D.
Photographed in Sohra Forest, Meghalaya.
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