Mountain Orange
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Mountain Orange
P Native Photo: Aarti Khale
Common name: Mountain Orange • Mizo: Zo-vuakdup
Botanical name: Melodinus cochinchinensis    Family: Apocynaceae (Oleander family)
Synonyms: Melodinus khasianus, Nerium piscidium, Wrightia piscidia

Mountain Orange is a stout, large climber, up to 10 m, hairless except for inflorescences. Flowers are white, pinwheel shaped; tube about 6 mm, hairy except at base; petals ovate, about 3.5 mm; corona large, lobes 2-cleft, hairy, style about 3 mm. Flower-stalks are short, sepals round or broadly elliptic, about 2 mm, fringed with hairs. Flowers are borne in panicle-like cymes, at branch-ends, 3-branched, 4-5.5 cm, minutely hairy. Branches are dark brown. Leaf-stalks are 6-10 mm; leaf blade elliptic or narrowly so, 6-19 X 2.2-6.5 cm, papery, base wedge-shaped, tip pointed or tapering. Berries are narrowly ellipsoid, about 9 x 5 cm. Mountain Orange is found in montain forests, at altitudes of 800-2800 m, in S Yunnan, Myanmar, Thailand, Vietnam, and East Himalaya. Flowering: April-May.
Medicinal uses: In China, the fruit are used to treat infantile meningitis and fractures.

Identification credit: J.M. Garg Photographed in Lalbagh Botanical Gardens, Bangalore.

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