Bauhinia purpurea Linn.

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Bauhinia purpurea Linn. Family

Leguminosae

Bauhinia purpurea Linn. English Name

Purple Bauhinia

Bauhinia purpurea Linn. Local Name

Gulabi Kachnar

Bauhinia purpurea Linn.

Bauhinia purpurea Linn. Description

A small evergreen tree. The leaves are single (not compound). Each leaf is divided into two pointed lobes by a cleft that goes halfway down the leaf. The leaves are heart shaped and vary in size from 7 to 15 mm in diameter. The bark is dark grey or brown and the young branches are covered with short, stiff hairs. The flowers are pink, lilac to purple in color, fragrant and bloom between September and November depending on geographic location. The pods are flat, thick, slightly curved and pointed. They vary in length from 15 to 30 cm. Pods mature between January and March. There are minor problems with defoliating insects. It can be regenerated by seed or vegetative methods. Seed can be successfully stored for a year if seed is protected from seed borers. The wood is soft and light with a specific gravity of 0.57 having Straight Grains.

Bauhinia purpurea Linn.

Bauhinia purpurea Linn. Distribution

Native to Pakistan, this tree is found in the sub-Himalayan tracts. It has a wide distribution through the hills and plains of the sub-continent and is a favorite avenue tree of the landscape designers. An intolerant tree of the tropics and sub-tropics within a precipitation range of 1000 to 2160 mm. It grows within a temperature range of -1 to 40°C. It is drought resistant and will tolerate light frost. It does best on well drained, sandy loam or loamy soils.

Bauhinia purpurea Linn.

Bauhinia purpurea Linn. Uses

Although a small tree it is relatively fast growing. It has potential as a farm forestry tree. This is especially true in the foothill’s regions of Pakistan. Also used for erosion control, fodder, food (pickle and chutney), tannin, honey, and medicinal (antidote for snake bite).

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