Black Cutch Tree
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Black Cutch Tree
ative Photo: Pravin Kawale
Common name: Black Cutch Tree, black catechu, Cutch tree, cashoo, catechu, wadalee gum • Assamese: খৈৰ kher • Bengali: খয়ের khayer • Gujarati: ખેર kher • Hindi: दन्त धावन dant-dhavan, गायत्रिन् gayatrin, खैर khair, खयर khayar, मदन madan, पथिद्रुम pathi-drum, पयोर payor, प्रियसख priya-sakh • Kannada: ಕಾಚು kaachu, ಕದಿರ kadira, ಕಾದು kadu, ಕಗ್ಗಲಿ kaggali • Konkani: खैर khair • Malayalam: കരിണ്ടാലി karintaali • Marathi: खैर khair, खयर khayar, यज्ञवृक्ष yajnavrksa • Nepali: खयर khayar • Sanskrit: गायत्रिन् gayatrin, खदिरः or खादिरः khadira, पथिद्रुम pathi-drum, पयोर payor, प्रियसख priya-sakh • Tamil: செங்கருங்காலி cenkarungali, காசுக்கட்டி kacu-k-katti, கறை karai • Telugu: ఖదిరము khadiramu. కవిరిచండ్ర kaviricandra, నల్లచండ్ర nallacandra • Urdu: کهير khair
Botanical name: Senegalia catechu    Family: Mimosaceae (Touch-me-not family)
Synonyms: Acacia catechu, Mimosa catechu, Acacia wallichiana

Black Cutch tree is a small tree, growing 3-15 m high. The stem is dark brown to black, with rough bark which peels off in long strips in mature trees; young trees have corky bark. The fern-like leaves are 100-200 mm long and contain between 8 and 30 pairs of small leaves made up of numerous, oblong pairs of secondary leaflets 2-6 mm long. Glands occur on the stem below the first pair of leaves, and between the uppermost six pairs of leaves. Pairs of stout thorns up to 10 mm long are found at the base of each leaf. The flowers are white or pale yellow, about 3 mm long and bunched tightly together to form a cylindrical flower spike, 35-75 mm long, resembling a lamb's tail. The brown, beaked seed pods are 50-125 mm long on a short stalk and contain between four and seven seeds, which are dark brown, flat and 5-8 mm in diameter. The taproot branches to 2 m depth.

Identification credit: Pravin Kawale Photographed in Maharashtra & Rajasthan.

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