Chinese Salacia
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Chinese Salacia
ative Photo: Dinesh Valke
Common name: Chinese Salacia, holly-leaved berried spindle tree • Kannada: ಏಕನಾಯಕ ekanayaka • Malayalam: ചെറുകൊരണ്ടി cherukoranti, ഏകനായകം ekanayakam • Marathi: सप्तरंगी saptarangi • Sanskrit: सप्तचक्र saptachakra, एकनायक ekanayaka, पीतिका pitika • Tamil: சுண்டன் cuntan, கருக்குவை karukkuvai • Telugu: నేరాణి nerani • Tulu: ಏಕನಾಯಕೆ ekanayake Source: Names of Plants in India
Botanical name: Salacia chinensis    Family: Celastraceae (Spike-thorn family)
Synonyms: Salacia prinoides, Tontelea prinoides

Chinese Salacia is a climbing shrub, which grows up to 4 m tall. Branchlets are angular, with leaves carried on stalks 8-10 mm long. Leaf blade is elliptic, narrowly ovate-round or obovate-elliptic, 5-11 X 2-5 cm, leathery, base wedge-shaped, margin sparsely toothed, tip nearly acute. Small yellow-green flowers arise in 3-6-flowered fascicles in leaf axils. Flower stalks are 6-10 mm. Sepals are triangular, up to 1 mm. Petals are broadly ovate, 3 mm, broadly spreading or curved outward, with rounded tip. Disk is cup-shaped, 1 mm tall. Berry is round or ovate, 1 cm in diameter, red when ripe, 1-seeded. Flowering: December.
Medicinal uses: The roots of this species have medicinal uses, including normalizing menstruation and invigorating circulation.

Identification credit: Radha Veach Photographed in Tungareshwar WLS, Maharashtra.

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