Popcorn Cassia
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Popcorn Cassia
aturalized Photo: Tabish
Common name: Popcorn Cassia, Peanut Butter Senna • Manipuri: ꯗꯥꯑꯣꯄꯠꯇꯥ Dao patta
Botanical name: Senna didymobotrya    Family: Caesalpiniaceae (Gulmohar family)
Synonyms: Cassia didymobotrya, Cassia nairobensis

Popcorn Cassia is a shrub or small tree producing golden-yellow flowers, opening from buds which are enclosed in greenish-black bracts. The plant looks quite similar to Candle Bush, and grows up to 0.5-5 m tall. The flowers distinctly smell of peanut butter, which inspired the common names. It is native to Africa, naturalized wide across the world. This elegant shrub has arching branches with compound leaves, 10-50 cm long, with leaflets in 8-18 pairs. It blooms beautiful large clusters of bright yellow flowers. Fruit is a flat, 9-16 seeded pod, linear-oblong, 7-12 cm x 1.5-2.5 cm, glabrescent, short beaked, dehiscent or indehiscent when dry, depressed between the seeds, sutures raised, blackish-brown. Popcorn Cassia was introduced in India as a green manure and also as a garden plant.

Identification credit: Aarti Khale Photographed in Munnar, Kerala.

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