Black Turmeric
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Black Turmeric
ative Photo: Anne Thingnam
Common name: Black Turmeric • Hindi: काली हल्दी Kali Haldi, Nar Kachura, कृष्ण केदार Krishna kedar • Manipuri: ꯌꯥꯢꯃꯨ Yaimu, ꯌꯥꯏꯉꯥꯡ ꯑꯃꯨꯕꯥ যাঈঙাঙ অমূবা Yaingang Amuba • Marathi: काला हल्दी Kala-haldi • Telugu: Nalla Pasupu, Manupasupu • Kannada: kariarishina, naru kachora • Bengali: Kala haldi • Mizo: Aihang, Ailaihang • Assamese: kala haladhi • Nepali: कालो हलेदो Kaalo haledo • Tangkhul: Yaimu
Botanical name: Curcuma caesia    Family: Zingiberaceae (Ginger family)

Black Turmeric is a perennial herb with bluish-black rhizome, native to North-East and Central India. The leaves have a deep violet-red patch which runs through the length of the lamina. Usually, the upper side of the leaf is rough, velvety, but this character may vary. Flowering bracts are green with a ferruginous tinge. Flower petals may be deep pink or red in color. The rhizome is bitter, hot taste with pungent smell. Black Turmeric is used in Tantrik Sadhana. The dried leaves are used as a source for fuel. Northern tribes use Black Turmeric as a talisman to keep the evil spirits away. Presently Black Turmeric is on the verge of extinction.
Medicinal uses: Claimed to be useful in treating Piles, Leprosy, Bronchitis, Asthma, Cancer, Epilepsy, Fever, Wounds, Impotency, Fertility, Menstrual disorders, tooth ache, vomiting etc.

Identification credit: Sulochana Thingnam Photographed in Imphal, Manipur.

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