Exploring Timber Trail at Kulgi
Timbers refer to the wood obtained from cluster of trees for building construction and carpentry works. Until this century, timbers were part of human beings’ evolutionary process. Our ancestors first burned wood to ward of the chill and fear of night and later started using it to build house, make boats, tilling tools, chariots, carts, storing containers, pulp etc.. Today timber wood is becoming a symbol of wealth and pride than a symbol of basic need. The costs are skyrocketing as the supplies are diminishing due to over exploitation of timber trees.
Dandeli forest is one such “Veritable Goldmine” endowed with variety of timber trees such as teak, rose wood, sandalwood. These forests supplied timbers for ship building yards of Haider Ali (1761-1782). With the advent of British, the timber of this forest was extracted for various purposes during World War II. After the war, the timbers were supplied to meet the demands for civil use, railway sleepers, transmission and telegraph poles, ship building, building houses in cities, schools, government office buildings. The forests also became a major source for raw material for the Indian Plywood Industry Company set up in Dandeli in 1943 and the Western India Matchwood Company started in 1950. Further damage happened to these forests from Kali Hydel projects such as Supa, Kodsalli and Kadra due to submergence of forest area. In spite of these threats, the Dandeli forest is still considered to the epitome of rich timber forest in the country.
Timber trail near Kulgi Nature Camp:
The timber trail near Kulgi Nature Camping Centre gives you an opportunity to explore some unique timbers of this forest. Details of this trail are detailed below:
|Trail distance||2.8 km|
|Start point||Interpretation Centre Kulgi|
|End point||Kulgi – Ambikanagar Road|
|Latitude & Longitude|
|Interesting features||Sighting of water falls, undulated landscape, distinctive timbers, indirect evidences of wildlife, chirping of birds.|
|Signages||Wayside signages are displayed at each timber tree making your trail enjoyable.|
THE NATURE TRAIL:
The nature trail follows an easy, reasonably flat route. The trail is just 2.8 km long. It should take you about 1 Â½ hours to complete. While on the trek please
⇒ Go slow: Make the trek an enjoyable experience; carry your binoculars, water and a small first aid kit.
⇒ Be sensitive as trekking is about appreciating nature.
⇒ Don’t throw litter and garbage. Bring back litter thrown by others.
⇒ Use a camera to capture the beautiful sights but do not overdo it by intruding into the privacy of the animals.
⇒ Do not make noise.
⇒ No smoking or drinking.
Let’s begin our Timber trail:
Start the trail through the entrance near the interpretation center. Walk for about a 100 mts and you will notice a huge teak tree to your left which is about 30 years old. This tree native to central and south India, Myanmar, Thailand and Java loves a warm, moist tropical climate with plenty of rain. It is also called as Indian Oak. In Sanskrit it is called as Saka, saagun in Hindi, Sagwani in Kannada.
According to Hindu mythology, when the world was divided into dvipas or islands surrounded by the sea of milk, one of them were named shaka after the teak tree that grew there. The Sanskrit word shaka means curiously enough, power, strength and vegetable.
Teak wood contains a resin stopping insects or termites eating from it. Leaves are used as plates and for covering roofs. It has high resistance power against fire. Tender leaves are used for dying cloth. Bhil tribes worship this tree as totem for protection against evil.
- The girls whose lover was a tree( Chongli tribe legend from Nagaland) There was a rich man who had a beautiful daughter. Many men wanted to marry her, but she refused them all. The girl lived in a dormitory with the other marriageable girl. Her heart had been given to a youth who met her secretly at night. She searched for her lover during the day but never found him so finally she told her parents about him. The father was determined to see the lover. One night he hid and followed the boy. As soon as he reached the water his arms turned to branches and transformed into a tall tree. The father was determined to cut this magic tree so he and his friends went to cut it. They cut and cut but it wouldn’t fall. Suddenly it came down with a crash and a chip flew far, killing the girl. The father rejoicing at the tree falling, only came back to find both the lovers had died together.
- Walk fifty meters away from this place, path slopes down slightly bamboo culms seen on both your sides, you find a robust tree called as Indian rosewood. It is a very native tree of South India and is planted as avenue trees.
Do you know? Rose wood tree:
⇒ Mature after 60 years for harvesting.
⇒ Planted as shade tree in coffee plantation.
⇒ Gains a height of 30m tall and attains girth of 1.5 – 2mts.
⇒ The bole is crooked with a dome shaped crown of lush green foliage.
⇒ Considered as the king of tropical timber tree.
The path is a little steep, just before the small stream (during the rainy season) on your left you can spot an underground shelter built by a porcupine. Porcupines are nocturnal creatures. A small bridge is being planned to be built over the stream. As you walk forward the path becomes broader, keep to the main path.
Walk along the winding path and you will come upon a tree of the fig family, Ficus asperima.
Do you know?
⇒ The figs are yellow or purple, yellowish dots when ripe.
⇒ The leaves are used as sandpaper in sandal wood carvings.
Did you know that trees are the longest living organisms on earth???
Figs are keystone species of rainforest ecosystems The flowers are pollinated by very small wasps that crawl through the opening in search of a suitable place to lay eggs without this pollinator service fig trees cannot reproduce by seed The wood of fig trees is often soft.
- Continue walking and you will come upon a tropical ornamental tree called Cassia fistula with a trunk consisting of hard reddish wood, growing up to 40 feet tall.Commonly known as Golden Shower Tree or Golden Shower Cassia. Other names include Indian laburnum, or “golden shower”.
Do you know? The golden shower tree is the state flower of Kerala in India. The flowers are of ritual importance in the Vishu festival of Kerala, and the tree was depicted on a 20 Indian rupees stamp. The golden shower tree is the national flower of Thailand; its yellow leaves symbolize Thai royalty.
There’s a big Culm of dowga bamboo seen and to your left is a climbing vine called neerballi.
These trees have bright, yellow, fragrant flowers and are attractive to bees and butterflies. The fruits have a pungent odour and the seeds are poisonous. Pulp from fruits called “Cassia pulp” is a well known Laxative. The wood is strong and very durable.
Calycopteris floribunda, (neerballi) is a climbing shrub, with vines, commonly known as Ukshi. One can see lots of these flowers in culms on the forest floor.
Did you know? Ukshi is revered as a life-saver by the forest dwellers that regularly depend on this vine during summer when streams dry up. Sections of the vine store water, which people often use to quench their thirst. These are found in “Kavus” or the Sacred Groves of Kerala.
Now to your left is a small dam, where two small streams meet. One can see a wild Forest Brinjal tree growing in between the streams. Take the right and walk up the path. Look out for the languar’s playing on the bamboos. The languar’s are considered to be sacred by the Himalayan people. The face is black and they have a very long tail, which may measure up to 50 cm in length.
Along the path there are 2 trees seen called the Bauhinia trees. One can see the leaves on the floor beneath. The leaves are easily recognized as they look like a camel’s foot.
The leaves and fruits have medicinal properties.
- In Hindi it is called Kachnar and in Kannada Basavanapada. It is a moderate sized evergreen tree, often planted in the avenues. These trees are known as Bauhinia Variegate L. originating in china. Commonly called Mountain ebony or camels foot because the leaves are spit in the center. The Mountain Ebony Tree is a very nice tree that has a rich and stimulating perfume which fills the air of the whole surrounding area. The sight can take persons breath away.
During the cold season the leaves fall and at the same time the large sweetly scented flowers appear. The flowers are large showy,orchid like . The young pods,leaves and buds used as vegetables.
Postal stamp issued in 1981: BAUHINIA To your right is a tree whose fruits are a favorite among the sloth bears.
Did you know? From the leaves of the trees, the wrappings of ‘bidis’ can be made. The bark is used for tanning and colorings. Gum can be obtained from the trees and it can produce oil from its seeds as well. Wood is of very good quality, reddish brown and strong.
- Ziziphus oenoplia is called pargi in Kannada, jackal jujube in English.
Did you know? These fruits are relished by the sloth bears.
Look to the right side and one can see a large deciduous tree with a climber growing on it. This climber runs upto 2-4 km it starts from the tree in the front of you and grows across the path on top.
The roots are astringent bitter, anthelmintic, digestive and antiseptic. They are useful in hyperacidity, ascaris infection, stomachalgia and healing of wounds.
- This tree is scientifically called as Terminalia paniculata and is a tree native to southwest India(including the Western Ghats and Karnataka) Known in the timber trade as kindal, and the “Climbing or scandent shrub” is called ACACIA CONCINNA, native to the warm, plains of central and south India.
Did you know? Terminalia paniculata is used as a substitute for teak. The tree is economically important for wood, medicinal uses, and raising silkworms. Shikakai means “fruit for hair” and is a traditional shampoo used in India. It is made from Acacia concinna.
You can spot ukshi growing on different trees. Admire the butterflies; one can see such a variety. Look out for wildlife evidence. Sloth bears feces might be seen on the trail or you can get to hear the calls of the jungle fowl. Beautiful endemic birds can be spotted like the racket tailed drongo and the white- belied treepie.
T.paniculata: Butterflies are attracted to these plants either for nectar or as food plants for their caterpillars Wood used in constructions.
- Continue along the path and one can easily recognize the fig tree growing on a germal tree. Lots of birds visit these trees during the fruiting season. Look up above eye level and you can spot a hole. This is a nest of the Malabar grey hornbill. Hornbills come back to the same tree to nest so one can spot these birds during the breeding season. This fig species is called, the Ficus Asperrima. Common name in English: Sandpaper tree.
Did you know? The juice of the bark and plant are used in enlargement of liver and spleen. The bark is used as a tooth brush to remove the tarter or cleanse the teeth.
The figs are yellow or purple, yellowish dots when ripe. The leaves are used as sandpaper in sandal wood carvings.
Look up at the tops of the trees around; one might spot the Malabar squirrel eating. Continue walking forward and you can’t miss this tree on your left as the flowers are bright red in color seen at branch ends, when the tree is leafless.
ERYTHRINA VARIEGATA (syn. E. indica Lam., E. variegata var. orientalis (L.) Merr.; Tiger’s Claw, Indian Coral Tree and Sunshine Tree) is a species of Erythrina native to the tropical and subtropical regions of eastern Africa, southern Asia, northern Australia, and the islands of the Indian Ocean and the western Pacific Ocean east to Fiji.
Did you know? People can eat the new leaves in curries and the adult leaves can make useful fodder. The tree is valued as an ornamental tree and is described as the gems of the floral world. It is strongly believed that lord Krishna stole the flowers of the coral tree from indras garden.
The flowers are popular among the birds even though it doesn’t have a fragrance. Planted as a shade tree in coffee plantations and as a support for pepper and betel vines. Several cultivars have been selected, including ‘Alba’ with white flowers.
Fact: Shade trees can make buildings up to 20 degrees cooler in the summer. Walk for about a 100 yard’s and one can easily spot the nandi tree because of its white colored bark.
Lagerstroemia lanceolata known as Ben teak in English and nadir mara, bili nandi in Kannada. Ben teak is a deciduous tree, native to the moist forests of Western Ghats, sometimes addressed as ‘naked maiden’ of forest.
Did you know? Ben teak is considered class 1 timbers. It is often associated with teak.
The flowers are small, white and fragrant.The timber is used in building constructions, boat building and furniture.
- A few feet ahead you come upon a large deciduous tree called Dellinia pentagyna roxb. In Kannada it is known as kadu kanigale.
Did you know? The flower-buds and young fruits have a pleasant, acid flavor and are eaten raw or cooked in Oudh and central India. The ripe fruits are also eaten.
A teak associate in U.Kannada reaching good size IN KULGI. Canopy is covered by brilliant sweet scented yellow flowers, when leafless in summer. Fruits relished by frugivorous birds, wild animalï¿½s monkeys and squirrels. Herbivores feed on the fallen fruits.
Lots of leaf foliage on the path, do watch your step as small creatures can be scurrying around busily. There’s a small patch on the trail which is muddy you can spot the paw prints of several animals like the mouse deer, spotted dear etc.
- We come upon the Terminalia paniculata tree to the left. Can you recall its trade name? One can see an ants nest near it. A fallen tree trunk is seen on the path. Look closely and you can see the termites eating the tree, shavings are seen on the floor.
- Melia azadirach: A small to medium sized deciduous tree reaching a height of 6-15 m or exceptionally up to 30 m with a short bole and a spreading crown.
Common names: Persian Lilac, BAKAYAN in Hindi, Kan: Turukaa Bevu.
Did you know? M. azedarach is often planted as an ornamental shade tree The wood from Melia azadirach is used in making musical instruments.
The tree has handsome clusters of pale purplish fragrant flowers Fruits, flowers, leaves, bark, and roots have medicinal properties. An oil can be extracted fro the berries and used for illumination. The fruits are said to be poisonous to humans and to some other mammals.
- You will see a big and handsome tree about 60-80 feet, called Terminalia bellericais.Commonly known as behera, in Kannada Tare Mara. It is common in the forests of Western Ghats and E .Peninsular in Deccan, carnatic, to 1000 m. It is a large deciduous tree with flowers having a strong honey-smell attracting bees flocking for nectar.
DID YOU KNOW? This tree, called vibhitaki in Sanskrit .meaning fearless, was avoided by Hindus of north India .who would not sit in its shade as it was supposed to be inhabited by demons. Terminalia bellerica fruit is also used in Egyptian folk medicine. Used in ayurvedic,’triphala'(One of the 3 myrobolans) It has great economic and religious importance in India. It is also grown as an avenue tree.
The fruit has medicinal importance and used in making ink, dying and tanning material. The kernel of the stone is edible and yields oil, which is applied to hair. Wood used for several purposes after immersing in water. Herbivores gather to eat fallen fruits.
- A huge jumba tree with ficus seen growing on it. And also a climber called drynera.
It is known as jamba in Hindi, marati and Kannada. A medium tree 20-25m tall, with semi-spreading, shady canopy. The bark is smooth, yellowish grey or brown, often pitted. Pits rounded or horizontal. Flowers are sweetly scented. Fig trees have profoundly influenced culture through several religious traditions.
Did you know?
*Trees renew our air supply by absorbing carbon dioxide and producing oxygen.
*The amount of oxygen produced by an acre of trees per year equals the amount consumed by 18 people annually. One tree produces nearly 260 pounds of oxygen each year. Now continue walking along the main trail and the path gets rocky.
If you hear a tapping sound on wood it’s the woodpeckers. Now walk along the path and you come onto a small clearing. A tree stump is seen in the center. Look to the immediate right.
- This tree is called nagar kuda.Tabernaemontana alternifolia L. it is a small deciduous tree.
Did you know? Charcoal is prepared from the root. The leaves root and flowers have medicinal properties. The flowers are white and fragrant, fruits orange yellow when ripe.
The acrid bitter root is used as a local anodyne and chewed to relieve tooth ache. The milky juice of the leaves is used as a cooling application on wounds.
- A little forward and you can see a huge jamba tree called, Xylia xylocarpa. ENG: IRUL, HINDI: JAMBU, KAN: JAMBA. The species can be divided into 2 varieties Xylia xylocarpa var. xylocarpa from India and Myanmar and Xylia xylocarpa var. kerrii from Myanmar, Thailand and Indochina. A large deciduous tree with small cream coloured flowers.
DID YOU KNOW? It is one of the chief associates of teak the dark red-brown, hard and durable wood is rarely attacked by termite s and can be used for heavy constructions, furniture, boats etc.
Bark, wood and fruits are used in traditional medicine. The young leaves are edible.
- Along the path there is a huge teak tree with ficus seen growing on it, in a few years the ficus will surround and suffocate the teak tree.
The roots wrap around the host tree, widen, and slowly form a lattice-work that surrounds the host’s trunk. The fig’s crown grows foliage which soon overshadows the tree. Eventually, the host tree dies leaving the fig with a hollow trunk-which is easily climbed thanks to the many openings in the trunk. The hollow trunk provides an important home thousands of invertebrates, rodents, bats, reptiles, amphibians, and birds.
Continue along the path. During the fruiting season you can’t miss the tree. To your left along the path you see a stone, continue walking and a few meters ahead to your left you see an amte tree .One can spot birds on this tree.
- The amte tree is scientifically known as, Spondias mangifera. Commonly seen in the deciduous to semi-evergreen forests of Western Ghats. A large tree with leaves turning bright-yellow before falling.
DID YOU KNOW? Kan: Amatikai, Eng: Indian Hog Plum, Hindi: Amra The fruit is edible known as amte The leaves are eaten as greens; fruit cooked into curries, and pickled. The Indian hog plum is important for its medicinal values.
Fruits fleshy, sour and edible, yellow when ripe. Herbivores gather under the fruiting tree for the fallen fruits. The fruits, leaves, bark are used in various treatments.
Close to the amte tree on your right is a huge jamun tree.
- JAMUN (Nerale mara): The jamun tree (Syzygium cumini (L)) is fast-growing, reaching full size in 40 years.
Did you know? In southern Asia, the tree is venerated by Buddhists, and it is commonly planted near Hindu temples because it is considered sacred to both Krishna and ganesha. The leaves and fruits are employed in worship. The tree is grown as shade for coffee in India. It is wind-resistant and sometimes is closely planted in rows as a windbreak. Valued as an ornamental in Israel. The leaves have served as fodder for livestock and as food for tassar silkworms in India.
In the Philippines and goa wine is made from the fermented fruit. The jaunt tree is of real value in apiculture. The flowers have abundant nectar, and the honey is of fine quality. Jamun fruit can be eaten raw and can be made into tarts, sauces and jams. Wood used in well-works, house-buildings etc., bark used in local medicines.
The essential oil distilled from the leaves is used to scent soap and is blended with other materials in making inexpensive perfume.
A little further to your left is medium sized tree; its fruits relished by the hornbills especially the Malabar pied hornbill.
- Strychnos nux vomica: A medium sized tree, with woody spines. Common names: Eng: Snake wood Hindi and Kannada: kajra.
Did you know? Flowers are fragrant and have strong odor of turmeric. The fruits are of a small orange size, orange red in colour and are among a favorite of the hornbills. The seeds yield alkaloids (1) Strychnine and (2) Brucine, strong poisons and stimulants in small doses largely exported to Europe. Native tribes in Central and South America have used extracts from this plant for centuries as a medicine to inhibit muscle contractions and as a poison for the tips of arrows.
It is used to treat cold, fever and headaches. Wood is hard, durable and the root is very bitter. Wood is used to make axe-handles, cart wheels, cots etc. They are also used in the preparation of medicated product for the hair and scalp.
Continue along the path until it divides. Take the right and you find scattered trees. The ground beneath has lots of dead leaves. From here you will come to the edge. The sight in front is breath taking. The Nagajhari valley point inside the forest offers a beautiful view of the hills and the valley. You can hear the sathkhand waterfalls which are seen right across from where you’re standing. Lots of tree stumps so rest and enjoy the scenic beauty. Come back on the main trail to continue the trek.
- On the trail to your right you will spot a deciduous tree called, Careya arborea. It is known as Kumbhi in Hindi AND Kannada, and Ceylon Oak in English. It is a deciduous fire resistant tree, whose leaves turn red in the cold season and grows up to 15m high. Flowers are yellowish-white in color and are like water-pots and produce large green berries.
Interesting facts: The fruit is edible but the seeds are reported as slightly poisonous. In India the tussar silkworm is fed on the leaves. C. arborea makes a good shade tree. The wood is durable, especially under water.
The wood of C. arborea is used, mainly in India and Burma (Myanmar), for general construction (house posts, planking), furniture and cabinet work, carts, mouldings, turnery, piling and Agricultural implements. The bark of the tree and the calyxes of the flowers are often used for curing coughs and colds.
- Continue walking and you can see shikkakai climbers on your sides.
- You see a tree of the Ziziphus family. It is a genus of about 40 species of spiny shrubs and small trees in the buckthorn family Rhamnaceae, distributed in the warm-temperate and subtropical regions throughout the world. Walk along the path till it divides .take the path to the left. A dead fallen tree to the left of the path.
- RANDIA DUMETORUM : A large deciduous thorny shrub grows up to 5 meters of height. Flowers white, fragrant, solitary, seen on at the end of short branches. Fruits smooth berries and are yellow when ripe.
English: Emetic nut tree.
Hindi: Mainphal, Madan.
Malayalam: Malankara, Karachulli.
Did you know? The shrub is used by the natives as a fish poison, and is said to act in man as an irritating emetic. This tree is also cultivated for medicinal purpose. Wood is used to make walking sticks.
Their wood is burnt as fuel. It is widely used as a medicine for emesis therapy in ayurveda.
Path goes slight upward. Eucalyptus tree on your left. The smell is strong and fragrant.
- A few feet ahead on your right are a medium sized tree about 10 years old. Albizia odoratissima – Tea Shade Tree is a medium sized tree. Flowers are pale yellowish white, fragrant, and generally appear from March to June. Fruits appear in early August and start ripening at the end of October.
Did you know? Albizia odoratissima has been extensively planted as a shade tree in tea and coffee plantations. The shade extends the productive life of crop plants and increases annual yields. It helps in soil improvement in tea plantations of the Asian subcontinent Dead and defective branches from shade trees are a major source of fuel for plantation laborers.
The pods of Albizia odoratissima are eaten by monkeys. The leaves are an excellent green manure and cattle fodder. The heartwood of mature trees is a beautiful dark brown color.
Just before the bamboo culms, a tall tree commonly called nellikai is seen.
- PHYLLANTHUS EMBLICA LINN(nelli,amla) is a 10-15 m tall tree, common in tropical deciduous forests of south Asia. It flowers during march-April and has an extended fruiting period from oct- march. The fruits are greenish yellow in color and tastes sour. The fruit is fibrous in nature. The fruit is sometimes eaten along with salt.
Did you know? Fruits are rich natural source of Vitamin C. In Hinduism, Alma is regarded as a sacred tree worshipped as Mother Earth. The leaves, fruit and flowers are used in worship in India. In Himachal Pradesh the tree is worshipped in Kartik as propitious and chaste. Alma contains minerals such as chromium, zinc, and copper.
The fresh juice is cooling, refrigerant, diuretic and laxative. The dried fruits are astringent and useful in hemorrhage. Alma has cell rejuvenating properties and therefore used in maintaining good health of skin and hair. I t is widely used in preparation of hair shampoos. Alma helps to keep the hair glossy and shining. It also helps to prevent dandruff. Alma is also known to have anti aging properties.
The fruit Alma is pickled and made in curries.
Interesting facts: Trees grow from the top, not from the bottom as is commonly believed. A branch’s location on a tree will only move up the trunk a few inches in 1000 years. A little further on the hilly trail to your right is a species of bamboo called chivari bamboo.
- Oxytenanthera stocksii: The Culm up to 10 m tall, straight at the top, yellowish green, erect. Confined and endemic to southern peninsular India. Local names Konda, Oor-shema KARNATAKA | Uyi, Mula KERALA | Chivari, Mes MAHARASHTRA.
Did you know? BAMBOO is known as the poor mans timber. Confined and endemic to southern peninsular India This bamboo is in high demand among craftsman. Bamboo is eco friendly.
Suited for construction purposes. Also used for making furniture, ladders and supports. Bamboo shoots are good in fiber and have optimum amount of other nutrients. They are said to be anti-cancerous and antimicrobial in nature.
1) The fastest growing plant on this planet.
2) A critical element in the balance of oxygen and carbon dioxide in the atmosphere.
3) A viable replacement for wood.
The path is winding keep to the left. Continue on the path and take the right. The path is uneven keep on the trail till you see a large number of bamboo plants. This is a bamboo grove. This bamboo species is called bambus bamboo locally known as dowga.
- Bambusa bamboo: this tree attains the best growth in moist deciduous forests up to an altitude of 1000 meters. Prefers rich and moist soil, and thrives near perennial rivers and valleys. Found almost throughout India, and is common in Central and South India.
Did you know? Flowers at long intervals 40-60 years and the clump/plant die after flowering. Bamboo shoots are used as food in various ways. They are used in preparation such as bamboo candy, bamboo chutney and canning of bamboo in syrups.
It is used as raw material for pulp and paper, to make panel products and handicrafts, and for thatching and roofing.
FACT: There are almost 130 species in India, spread across 18 genera
The death of one 70-year old tree would return over three tons of carbon to the atmosphere. The racket tailed drongo is easily spotted here. Along the trail you will see a groove of macaranga trees.
- Macaranga trees are small to medium sized trees. Trees up to 12 m tall. The bark is brownish or blaze red.
Did you know? These trees have hollow stems that can serve as nesting space and occasionally provide nectar. The trees benefit because the ants attack herbivorous insects and either drives them away or feed on them.
These plants are noted for being re colonizers.
One acre of trees removes up to 2.6 tons of carbon dioxide each year.
- M. azedarach is described as a small to medium-sized shrub or tree in the mahogany family.
- Do you recognize seeing this tree earlier? Well it’s none other than the Jamun tree.
- Om tree: fragrant leaves.
There is an old teak plantation since 1970.Lots of teak trees around. Continue along the trail for 5 minutes and to your right you will see a tree with an unusual bark.
- Terminalia tomentosa Common names are Asna, Indian-laurel’, Taukkyan (Burma), Sadar, Matti, Marda (India), and casually “crocodile bark” due to the characteristic bark pattern. It is a tree growing to 30 m tall.
Did you know? Terminalia tomentosa has a remarkable attribute. Some members of the species store water in the dry season. Water stored in the stem is often tapped and used as a source of potable water in the summer by forest folk. It is also thought to have curative value for stomach pain. The leaves are used as food for silkworms . The bark is fire-resistant.
The bark is used medicinally against diarrhoea. The heartwood is moderately durable and the sapwood is liable to powder-post beetle attack. The wood is used for furniture, cabinetwork, joinery, paneling, specialty items, boatbuilding,
Did you know? Tree rings provide precise information about environmental events, including volcanic eruptions.
Now you come unto the main road cross the road and a little to the left is a medium sized tree called muttal and scientifically as Butea monosperma.
- Butea monosperma it is a medium sized dry season-deciduous tree, growing to 15 m tall.This tree gets up to 50 ft high, with stunning flower clusters. It loses its leaves as the flowers develop, January – March.
Did you know? It is also called the Flame of the Forest. The flowers are bright orange-red. The gum from the tree, called kamarkas in Hindi, is used in certain food dishes. The gum is also known as Bengal Kino, and is considered valuable by druggists because of its astringent qualities, and by leather workers because of its tannin. Good charcoal can be made from it. It is a sacred tree, referred to as a treasurer of the gods, and used in sacrifice related rituals. The flowers are offered as in place of blood in sacrifice rituals to goddess Kali. The dry stem pieces are used to make sacred fire.
From its wood, sacred utensils are made It is used for timber, resin, fodder, medicine, and dye. The wood is dirty white and soft and, being durable under water, is used for well-curbs and water scoops.
A Hindu superstition has it that if the root of a Palasa tree is collected when the Ashvini constellation rules the season (mid-September to mid-October) and tied to a man’s arm, any woman he touches will fall in love with him.
Indian Mythology: This tree is mentioned frequently in the Vedas its trifoliate leaves represent Hindu triad, with Brahma on the left, Vishnu in the middle and Shiva to the right. Devotees of Shiva and Vishnu paint their foreheads with it .The tree is considered sacred to the moon. Buddists also revere it as for legends has it that Queen Mahamaya seized a branch of this tree at the very moment to the birth of her son Gautham Buddha.
How the Palasa cam,e on earth (an Indo-Aryan tale) one day the chief gods Indra ,felt a great thrist. The gods of his court asked the goddess Gayatri to go to the celestial mountain Mujavana where the Soma creeper grew and bring it back so that Indra could have an uninterrupted supply of water. Gayatri disguised herself as an eagle and flew to the mountail to find it guarded by the sentries of the Moon. She flew down and seized the creeper in her beak. One of the sentries let an arrow fly at the bird and it missed Gayatri but struck a vine. One of the leaves fell off and grew into the palasa tree.
The Two lovers (A Koraput tribal legend) The tribes had a leader called Chaitu Bhattra.he married his daughter against her wishes. Soon after marriage she fell in love with a dark ,handsome Muria boy. They met secretly. The villagers saw this, who told the husband. The husband wanted proof so he lied to his wife saying he was going away to meet his sister . he only went as far as the forest and hid there during the day. He returned at night to find the Muria boy in his hut. He was furious and beat them to death. He threw the bodies in the forest. Blood from their bodies flowed and met a single stream. From this stream grew a tree. The flowers were red for the girl and black for the boy.
DID YOU KNOW THAT? Arab horse dealers put one seed into each feed of corn to keep their horses in condition. This is the end of the timber nature trail. Take the left on the main road and walk towards the kulgi nature camp.
These forests are treasure troves of biological biodiversity. They harbor millions of species of plants, birds, mammals, insects, amphibians and reptiles.
What you can do:
-> Buy only timber that’s certified.
-> Recycle wood based products, use recycled wood and paper.
-> Buy wood products, such as furniture made only from replaceable trees.
-> Hope the trek gave some insight on these beautiful trees and it has helped in appreciating them more.
Try doing the following?
Q. Teak: What is the height of the tree?
Q. Measure the girth of the tree?
Q. What is the cost of 1 cubic feet of this timber?
Q. Which is the tree of the ficus species that Buddha sat under?
Q. What is Alma famously called in English?