COUROUPITA GUIANENSIS or CANON BALL or KAILASPATI
Post 121 ⇒ by Gautam Shah ➔
These trees are as amazing, as their name “Canon ball” is. Its fruits are like large brown balls held on short twigs, and so appear to grow out of the trunk. Fruits take 8-9 months to ripen, fall and burst open with a loud crack. The flowers are large (up to 60 mm) with six petals, brightly coloured from pink to crimson coloured near the base, and yellowish toward the tips. Flowers have sweet smell at night and in the early morning. The ripe and bust fruit balls give a foul stench, which attracts bees and animals.
|Cannon Ball fruits|
The tree, bark, leaves and flowers are used to treat hypertension, tumours, pain, inflammation, common cold, stomachache, skin conditions and wounds, malaria, and toothache, etc.
|Young tree with fresh leaves April India|
These are tall (35 to 50 mts) and erect deciduous trees. The leaves are long like a mango tree. They grow in clusters at the ends of branches. The leaves ripen to reddish colour, shed three times a year. The trees, however, do not remain bare for more than few days, as immediately new leaves appear giving a wonderful variegated green foliage. A tree can bear 1000 flowers per day.
|Fresh leaves almost like Mango tree leaves|
The flowers’ bundle resembles “Shiva-lingam” a hooded snake or a Chhatra of Sheshnag. And for the same reason it is also called " Nag-lingam" or “Shiv-ful” (flower of Shiva). The tree is found in Shiv temple complexes and also Buddhists holy places across Asia.
|Flowers of Cannon Ball or Kailaspati / Ling-ful|
The tree is of Guinea origin, but is found in many parts of the world. Its popular name is Cannon ball tree. Its botanical name is Coroupita guianensis. In India it is known for 3000 years and known by Kailaspati, Shiv-fal, Shiv-lingi, Nag-lingam, etc.