FoI
Kumarika   
Foto info
Kumarika
ative Photo: Prashant Awale
Common name: Kumarika • Hindi: कुमारिका Kumarika, Jangli aushbah, Bhitura • Mizo: Kaitha • Marathi: घोटवेल Ghotvel • Tamil: ayadi, malaittamarai, tirunamappalai, kal tamarai • Malayalam: kaltamara, karivilanti • Telugu: Kondadantena • Kannada: kaadu hambu, kaadu hambu thaavare • Bengali: কুমাৰিকা Kumarika • Oriya: mootrilata • Sanskrit: Vanamadhusnahi
Botanical name: Smilax ovalifolia    Family: Smilacaceae (Smilax family)
Synonyms: Smilax macrophylla, Smilax zeylanica

Kumarika is an armed or unarmed climber. Leaves leathery, shining, 7-15 x 4-11 cm, broadly ovate to elliptic, base rounded or shortly wedge-shaped; 3-5-nerved. Leaf stalk 1.5 cm long, base sheathing, with tendrils at the end. Flowers white, in dense umbels in leaf axils, 1-3 on a common peduncle. Bracts ovate. Perianth recurved in mature flowers, outer 3 segments, 4 mm long, oblong, inner narrower. Stamens about as long as the perianth. It is found from the Himalayan region in the north to Peninsular India. Flowering: January-April.
Medicinal uses: The roots of Kumarika are used for veneral diseases. Also applied in rheumatic swellings and given in urinary complaints and dysentery.

Identification credit: Prashant Awale
Photographed at Tungi, Lonavala, Maharashtra.
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