Myristica fragrans Houtt.

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Myristica fragrans Houtt. Family

Myristicaceae

Myristica fragrans Houtt. English Name

Nutmeg-tree

Myristica fragrans Houtt. Local Name

Jai-Phal

Myristica fragrans Houtt.

Myristica fragrans Houtt. Description

This plant is an evergreen tree, having height of 5 to 15m tall, sometimes reaching 20 m. The leaves are alternately arranged, dark green in colour and about 5 to 15cm long and 2 to 7 cm broad. The species is dioecious, which means. “male” or staminate flowers and “female” or carpellate flowers are borne on different plants, although occasional individuals produce both kinds of flower. The flowers are bell-shaped, pale yellow and somewhat waxy and fleshy. Staminate flowers are arranged in groups of one to ten, each 5 to 7 mm long, carpellate flowers are in smaller groups, one to three, and somewhat longer, up to 10 mm long. The fruits are yellow, smooth, fleshy and about, 6 to 9 cm long. Carpellate trees produce smooth yellow ovoid or pear-shaped fruits, 6 to 9 cm long with a diameter of 3.5 to 5 cm. The fruit has a fleshy husk. When ripe the husk splits into two halves along a ridge running the length of the fruit. Inside is a purple-brown shiny seed, 2 to 3 cm long by about 2 cm across, with a red or crimson covering (an aril). The seed is the source of nutmeg, the aril the source of mace.

Myristica fragrans Houtt.

Myristica fragrans Houtt. Distribution

It is Indigenous to the South Pacific region that is Moluccas and Banda. It can also be in tropical regions like sub-continent (Pakistan and India), Indonesia, Grenada in the West Indies. It grows well in wild on rich volcanic soils and in tropical rain forests.  It can be cultivated as a crop in the humid, hot and tropic regions at elevation of about 4000m.

Myristica fragrans Houtt.

Myristica fragrans Houtt. Uses

It is used in preparations for the preparation of medicines for hemorrhoids relief, and also considered an important component for making blood cleaning medicines. Grounded seeds of plants in the form of paste are mixed with honey is eaten to strengthen the heart. The paste can also be used to treat skin problems like allergies.

(Orwa et al., 2009)

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