S. NAZIMUDDIN AND M. QAISER
Xeromphis spinosa (Thunb.) Keay
A small tree or deciduous shrub, spines sharp, stout, straight, axillary, opposite-decussate, 1.2–3.5 cm long, bark grey. Leaves opposite or fascicled on dwarf branches, obovate, 2.5–7.5 x 1.25–3.75 cm, rarely ovate or spathulate, entire, obtuse or acute, membranous, glabrous or pubescent on both surfaces, specially on the nerves beneath; shortly petioled, petiole hairy; lateral nerves prominent. Stipules deltoid or broadly ovate, acuminate, ciliate on the margins. Flowers solitary, rarely 2–3 on a peduncle, subterminal on dwarf leafy branchlets, yellowish, green-whitish-turning pale when old, fragrant 2–2.5 cm across, subsessile when pedunculate, peduncles c. 8 mm long. Calyx 1.25 cm long, strigose; tube campanulate; teeth ovate or rounded rarely spathulate, obtuse, spreading equalling the tube. Corolla 1.25–2 cm in diameter; tube 5 mm long, densely silky hairy outside; lobes c. 1.25 cm long, oblong or obovate, subacute, pubescent outside, spreading. Stigma fusiform. Fruit yellow-ovoid or subglohose, 25–38 cm long, smooth or obscurely ribbed, crowned by large calyx-lobes. Seeds numerous, embedded in pulp, flattened.
Fl. Per.: March-June.
Type: Macao-China, J.B. Bladh s.n. (BM).
Distribution: Ceylon, India, Pakistan (Rawalpindi, eastward Poonch), also occurs in east, central and possibly South Africa.
A rare or under collected species in our area. Wood is used for agricultural implements, fences and fuel. The bark and fruits are medicinal; ripe fruits are emetic, root bark is administrated in nauseate bowel complaints.