Wood Apple, Tree of Vishakha Nakshatra, Libra or Tula Rashi - Plant
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Description for Wood Apple
Wood apple is an erect, slow-growing tree with a few upward-reaching branches bending outward near the summit where they are subdivided into slender branchlets drooping at the tips. The bark is ridged, fissured and scaly.
The deciduous, alternate leaves, 3 to 5 in long, dark-green, leathery, often minutely toothed, blunt or notched at the apex, are dotted with oil glands and slightly lemon-scented when crushed.
Yellowish green flowers, tinged with red, are borne in small, loose, terminal or lateral panicles. The tree is mostly known for its hard woody fruit, size of a tennis ball, round to oval in shape. The pulp is brown, mealy, odorous, resinous, astringent, acid or sweetish, with numerous small, white seeds scattered through it.
Planting and care
It can be propagated by Seed, Root Cuttings, Air layering or by Budding onto the seedling stock.
Mostly cultivated by seeds. Seeds require 10-25 degrees C temperature to germinate. Sow seeds of wood apple in well-drained loamy soil during Feb-April. Seeds will germinate in 2-3 weeks. Water the seeds regularly until the plant fully established. Transplant the seedlings in the field at a spacing of 10m*10m. Fertilize your plant with any organic fertilizer during August.
Caring for Wood Apple
- Fertilize your wood apple plant every year with organic fertilizer during August.
- Prune the tree every year to maintain its shape and size.
- Prune out the damaged and diseased branches.
- Water the plant regularly.
Typical uses of Wood Apple
Special features: Large deciduous tree for large landscapes. It is a tree of Vishakha Nakshatra.
Culinary use: Fruits of wood apple are aromatic and sour-sweet, they can be eaten raw, or made into jellies, jams, chutneys, sherbets, etc. It can be blended with coconut milk and palm-sugar syrup and drunk as a beverage, or frozen like ice cream.
Ornamental use: This tree can be used for avenue planting.
Medicinal use: The fruit contains fruit acids, vitamins, and minerals. It is used mainly as a liver tonic to stimulate the digestive system. The fruit is also astringent, especially when unripe, and a cardiac tonic. The pulp of the fruit, especially when unripe, is used in the treatment of diarrhea and dysentery. The fruit is also seen as an effective treatment for hiccough, sore throat, and diseases of the gums. Both the fruit pulp and the powdered rind can be applied onto bites and stings of venomous insects.
- Note: Use only after consulting the specialist.
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