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Department of Botany

Since 1980

Filicium decipiens (Wight & Arn.) Thwaites



   Botanical NameFilicium decipiens (Wight & Arn.) Thwaites
   SynonymsFilicium elongatum .Radlk. ex Taub.; Rhus decipiens. Wight & Arn.
   Common NameEnglish : Fern Tree / Tamil : Iruvillipalai, Nirkongu
   DistributionGlobal : East Africa, Madagascar, India and Sri Lanka. Introduced in all tropical countries.
Indian: Throughout India
   DescriptionLarge Evergreen tree up to 25m height, Bark brownish, irregular flaky, branchlets stout, angular, with persistent leaf scar. Leaves compound, spiral, rachis winged, leaflets sessile, opposite, linear or oblong, Tip retuse or acuminate, margin entire, coriaceous. Inflorescence axillary panicle. Flowers pentamerous, pinkish white, complete, bisexual, actinomorphic, hypogynous, calyx sepals 5, gamosepalous, imbricate, caducous, corolla 5, gamopetalous, orbicular, tomentose. Stamens 5, free, inserted within the disc, filaments subulate, anther ovate. Gynoecium, ovary globous, oval shaped, ovules solitary, style hooked, stigma simple bilobed. Fruit drupe, ovoid, shining, seed 1, oblong.
   Flowering Fruiting periodSeptember - November / December - January
   UsesTree planted for ornamental for its eye-catching foliage.
   Medicinal UsesTraditionally used for diabetics, molluscicidal and anti-inflamattory
   Tamil NameIruvillipalai