White Siris
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White Siris
ative Photo: Pravin Kawale
Common name: White Siris, Tall albizia • Hindi: Safed Siris • Urdu: Sarapatri Sirsi • Assamese: Tantari-asing • Telugu: Tella Chinduga • Kannada: ಬಿಕುಲ್ Bikul, ಬೆಳ್ಳಟ್ಟೆ Bellatte, ಅಥಂಜಿ Athanji, ಸಾಲಬಾಗೆ Saalabaage, ಸಾಲುಬಾಗೆ Saalubaage, Belari • Malayalam: Jalavaka • Manipuri: ꯈꯥꯜ Khaal • Marathi: किनई Kinayi, पांढरा शिरीष Pandhra Shirish, Kinhai • Nepali: सेतो शिरीष Seto Siris, कराही Karaahi • Mizo: Kangtek
Botanical name: Albizia procera    Family: Mimosaceae (Touch-me-not family)

White siris is native to moist deciduous and semievergreen hill forests, swamp forests, and lowland savanna woodlands in Asia from northern India through southeast Asia. It is a fast-growing deciduous tree that generally reaches 10 to 20 m in height and has a straight to somewhat curved stem, smoothish light brown to light greenish gray bark, and a spreading thin crown. It grows best on very moist, alluvial sites of well-drained loams or clays but can tolerate shallow, dry, stony, and sandy soils. Leaves about 40 cm long; pinnae about 4–12, 15–20 cm long; leaflets 12–20, oblong-elliptic, rounded or retuse, 2–5 cm long, oblique. Flowering generally occurs during the rainy season. The distinctly fragrant (suggesting molasses) flowers form whitish glo- bose heads 20 to 24 mm in diameter, borne on racemes 8 to 25 cm long near the ends of twigs. The fruits are flattened pods 10 to 20 cm long and 1.8 to 2.5 cm broad, changing from green to deep red or reddish brown on maturity; each contains 6 to 12 seeds. The fruits ripen 6 to 9 months after flowering, during the dry season, and usually remain on the tree until the whole twig bearing the pods is shed.

Identification credit: Pravin Kawale, Navendu Pāgé Photographed in Alibag & Pune, Maharashtra.

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