Dragon's Eyes
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Dragon's Eyes
ative Photo: Dinesh Valke
Common name: Dragon's Eyes, Eyeball Tree, Longan • Assamese: আচফল Asphol, নাগা লীচী Nagalichi • Bengali: আঁশফল Ashphol • Garo: Samphal Bol • Kannada: ಕೆಂದಾಳ Kendaala, ಕನೆಕೆಂದಾಳ Kanekendaala, ಕೆನೆಕೆಂದಾಳ Kenekandaala • Khasi: Dieng Loba • Konkani: वुंब Wumb • Malayalam: പെമ്പുന്ന Pempunna, പെമ്പൂവം Pempuuvam, പൊരിപുന്ന Poripunna • Manipuri: ꯅꯣꯉꯥꯡ ꯍꯩ Nonggang hei • Marathi: ओंब Omb, उंब Umb • Mizo: Thei-fei-mûng • Tamil: செம்பூவம் Chem-puvam, காட்டுப்பூவம் Kattu-p-puvam, பிரப்பன் Pirappan, பூவம் Puvam
Botanical name: Dimocarpus longan    Family: Sapindaceae (Soapberry family)
Synonyms: Euphoria longana, Nephelium longana

Dragon's Eyes is a large tree, up to 15 m tall, with a dense, symmetrical crown and rough bark. Alternate, compound leaves are up to 30 cm in length, with 6-9 pairs of leaflets. Flowers are staminate, pistillate and hermaphroditic, small, whitish, produced in panicles in leaf axils or at ends of branches. Fruits are round, 1-2.5 cm in diameter, with a rough, light brown peel. One peeling, what emerges is a translucent, whitish ball of pulp with a smooth black seed inside. This is probably what inspired the name Dragon's Eyes and Eyeball tree. Dragon's Eyes is found in Indomalaysia and throughout the Western Ghats.

Identification credit: Vijayasankar Raman, Satish Chile, Giby Kuriakose Photographed at Kodagu Valley Resort, Madikeri, Karnataka.

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