Wild Durian
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Wild Durian
E Native Photo: P.S. Sivaprasad
Common name: Wild Durian • Malayalam: Vediplavu., Karayni, Vediplavu, Mullenpali, Kurunguplavu • Tamil: Vedupla, Malai Kongi, Aini Pla, Vedipila, Velupla
Botanical name: Cullenia exarillata    Family: Malvaceae (Mallow family)
Synonyms: Cullenia rosayroana

Wild Durian is a large evergreen tree, buttressed, up to 40 m tall. Bark is grayish white smooth when young later flaky. Young branchlets are covered by golden brown peltate scales. Leaves are simple, alternate, distichous; leaf-stalk round, peltate scales, 1.5 cm long; blade 7.5-16 x 2.7-6.2 cm, narrow oblong or oblong-lanceshaped, tip slightly tapering, base rounded-retuse, margin entire, leathery, hairless and smooth above, lower surface covered by peltate scales; midrib channeled above; secondary and tertiary nerves obscure. Flowers are bisexual, 3-3.5 cm long, brownish-yellow, densely clustered on tubercles on old branches; flower-stalk 2-3 cm long; epicalyx tubular, 1-1.5 cm long, bell-shaped, 4-5 lobed at tip, densely scaly outside, whitish puberulus inside. Sepal tube is 3-3.5 cm long, 5 lobed at tip, densely scaly outside; petals absent. Capsules are prickly, spherical, up to 12.7 cm across, 5-valved; seeds brown, many. Wild Durian is endemic to the Western Ghats.

Identification credit: P.S. Sivaprasad Photographed in Silent Valley National Park, Kerala.

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