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ative Photo: Aarti Khale
Common name: Turmeric • Assamese: হালধি, Halodhi • Bengali: হলুদ Halud • Gujarati: હળદર Haldar • Hindi: हल्दी Haldi • Kannada: ಅರಿಶಿನ Arishina, ಅರಿಸಿನ Arisina, ಹಳದಿ Haladi Haldi, ಮಂಜಳ್ Manjal, ಮಂಜಳ Manjala, ಹರಿದ್ರ Haridra • Malayalam: മഞ്ഞള്‍, Manjal • Marathi: हळद Halad • Nepali: हल्दी Haldi • Oriya: Haladi • Sanskrit: Haridra, Marmarii • Tamil: மஞ்சள் Manjal • Tangkhul: Yaingang • Telugu: హరిద్ర, Haridra • Urdu: Haldi, ہلدی • Mizo: Ai-eng • Manipuri: ꯌꯥꯢꯉꯥꯡ Yaingang • Santali: ᱥᱟᱥᱟᱝ Shasang
Botanical name: Curcuma longa    Family: Zingiberaceae (Ginger family)
Synonyms: Curcuma domestica, Curcuma brog, Curcuma ochrorhiza

Turmeric is a rhizomatous herb, native to tropical South Asia. Turmeric is a very important spice in India, which produces nearly the whole world’s crop and uses 80% of it. The plant grows to a height of 3-5 ft. It has oblong, pointed leaves and bears funnel-shaped yellow flowers, peeping out of large bracts. The rhizome is the portion of the plant used medicinally. It is usually boiled, cleaned, and dried, yielding a yellow powder. Dried Turmeric root is the source of the spice turmeric, the ingredient that gives curry powder its characteristic yellow color. Turmeric is used extensively in foods for both its flavor and color. Turmeric has a long tradition of use in the Chinese and Ayurvedic systems of medicine.

Identification credit: Thingnam Sophia Photographed in Nasik, Maharashtra & Imphal, Manipur.

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