Tag Archives: Malay Peninsula

Breadfruit

Botanical Name :Artocarpus altilis
Family: Moraceae
Tribe: Artocarpeae
Genus: Artocarpus
Species: A. altilis
Kingdom
: Plantae
Phylum: Magnoliophyta
Class: Magnoliopsida
Order: Rosales

Scientific names : Artocarpus altilis Linn.,Artocarpus communis  ,Artocarpus incisus
Common names:Fruta de pan (Span.), Breadfruit (Engl.),Rimas (Tag.)

Habitat :Native to the Malay Peninsula, through all of Island Southeast Asia and into most Pacific Ocean islands. The ancestors of the Polynesians found the trees growing in the northwest New Guinea area around 3500 years ago. They gave up the rice cultivation they had brought with them from ancient Taiwan, and raised breadfruit wherever they went in the Pacific (except Easter Island and New Zealand which were too cold). Their ancient eastern Indonesian cousins spread the plant west and north through Insular and coastal Southeast Asia. It has, in historic times, also been widely planted in tropical regions elsewhere

Description:
Breadfruit trees grow to a height of 85 feet (26 m). The large and thick leaves are deeply cut into pinnate lobes. All parts of the tree yield latex, a milky juice, which is useful for boat caulking.
You may click to see the picture:->

The tree.

Artocarpus altilis (fruit).

ARS breadfruit49

Bread fruit in early stages.

Breadfruit drawing

Tree trunk

Fruit
The trees are monoecious, with male and female flowers growing on the same tree. The male flowers emerge first, followed shortly afterward by the female flowers, which grow into a capitulum, which are capable of pollination just three days later. The pollinators are Old World fruit bats in the family Pteropodidae. The compound, false fruit develops from the swollen perianth and originates from 1,500-2,000 flowers. These are visible on the skin of the fruit as hexagon-like disks.

Breadfruit is one of the highest-yielding food plants, with a single tree producing up to 200 or more fruits per season. In the South Pacific, the trees yield 50 to 150 fruits per year. In southern India, normal production is 150 to 200 fruits annually. Productivity varies between wet and dry areas. In the Caribbean, a conservative estimate is 25 fruits per tree. Studies in Barbados indicate a reasonable potential of 6.7 to 13.4 tons per acre (16-32 tons/ha). The grapefruit-sized ovoid fruit has a rough surface, and each fruit is divided into many achenes, each achene surrounded by a fleshy perianth and growing on a fleshy receptacle. Some selectively bred cultivars have seedless fruit.

The breadfruit is closely related to the breadnut and the jackfruit.

Cultivation:
Breadfruit is an equatorial lowland species that grows best below elevations of 650 metres (2,130 ft), but is found at elevations of 1,550 metres (5,090 ft). Its preferred rainfall is 1,500–3,000 millimetres (59–120 in) per year. Preferred soils are neutral to alkaline (pH of 6.1-7.4) and either sand, sandy loam, loam or sandy clay loam. Breadfruit is able to grow in coral sands and saline soils.

Edible uses:
Nutritional :Breadfruit is roughly 25% carbohydrates and 70% water. It has an average amount of vitamin C (20 mg/100g), small amounts of minerals (potassium and zinc) and thiamin (100 ?g).

*Crop considered a carbohydrate food source.
*Fruit can be fried, boiled, candied or cooked as a vegetable.
*High in starch, it is also high in Vitamin B, with fair amounts of B and C.

Breadfruit is a staple food in many tropical regions. They were propagated far outside their native range by Polynesian voyagers who transported root cuttings and air-layered plants over long ocean distances. They are very rich in starch, and before being eaten they are roasted, baked, fried or boiled. When cooked the taste is described as potato-like, or similar to fresh-baked bread (hence the name).

Because breadfruit trees usually produce large crops at certain times of the year, preservation of the harvested fruit is an issue. One traditional preservation technique is to bury peeled and washed fruits in a leaf-lined pit where they ferment over several weeks and produce a sour, sticky paste. So stored, the product may last a year or more, and some pits are reported to have produced edible contents more than 20 years later.  Fermented breadfruit mash goes by many names such as mahr, ma, masi, furo, and bwiru, among others.

Drawing of breadfruit by John Frederick MillerMost breadfruit varieties also produce a small number of fruits throughout the year, so fresh breadfruit is always available, but somewhat rare when not in season.

Breadfruit can be eaten once cooked, or can be further processed into a variety of other foods. A common product is a mixture of cooked or fermented breadfruit mash mixed with coconut milk and baked in banana leaves. Whole fruits can be cooked in an open fire, then cored and filled with other foods such as coconut milk, sugar and butter, cooked meats, or other fruits. The filled fruit can be further cooked so that the flavor of the filling permeates the flesh of the breadfruit.

The Hawaiian staple food called poi made of mashed taro root is easily substituted or augmented with mashed breadfruit. The resulting “breadfruit poi” is called poi ?ulu. In Puerto Rico, it is called “panapen” or “pana”, for short. Pana is often served boiled with a mixture of sauteed bacalao (salted cod fish), olive oil and onions. It is also serve as tostones or mofongo. In Dominican Republic, it is known by the name “buen pan” or “good bread”. Breadfruit is also found in Indonesia and Malaysia, where it is called ‘sukun’. In the South Indian state of Kerala and coastal Karnataka especially on the sides of Mangalore, where it is widely grown and cooked, it is known as Kadachakka and Gujje respectively. In Belize, the Mayan people call it ‘masapan’.

Medicinal Uses:
Parts used:Bark, leaves, fruit.

Properties and constituents : Study has yielded papayotin, enzyme and artocarpin.

Folkloric:
• Decoction of the bark used as vulnerary (wound healing). In the Visayas, decoction of the bark used in dysentery.
• Used as emollient.
• In the Carribean, leaves are used to relieve pain and inflammation.
• In Jamaican folk medicine, leaf decoction used for hypertension.

.It is also used in traditional medicine to treat illnesses that range from sore eyes to sciatica.

Studies:-
• Phytochemical: (1) Study concluded that the starch of Artocarpus altilis showed a high degree of purity. Physiochemical and rheological characteristics suggest the starch could be useful in products that require long heating process, with an excellent digestibility that might be advantageous for medical and food use. (2) Study showed percent recoveries of amino acid, fatty acid and carbohydrate content showed 72.5%, 68.2% and 81.4%. The starch content is 15.52 g/100 g fresh weight.
• Cytoprotective: Study yielded cytoprotective components – ß-sitosterol and six flavonoids with good potential for medicinal applications.
• Antiinflammatory: Extract of breadfruit leaves was shown to contain compounds with significant anti-inflammatory activities.
Phenolic Compounds / Cytotoxicity: Study isolated isoprenylated flavonoids – morusin, artonin E, cycloartobiloxanthone and artonol B – that showed high toxicity against Artmia salina. Result of cytotoxicity test showed the presence of an isoprenyl moiety in the C-3 position in the flavone skeleton, an important factor for its activity.
• Negative Inotropic Effect: Leaf extract study exerted a weak, negative chronotropic and inotropic effect in vivo in the rat. The mechanism of action of the inotropic agent was not cholinergic and may involve decoupling of excitation and contraxction.

Other Uses:
The wood of the breadfruit tree was one of the most valuable timbers in the construction of traditional houses in Samoan architecture.
Breadfruit was widely and diversely used among Pacific Islanders. Its lightweight wood (specific gravity of 0.27) is resistant to termites and shipworms, consequently used as timber for structures and outrigger canoes.  Native Hawaiians used its sticky sap to trap birds, whose feathers were made into cloaks.
Its wood pulp can also be used to make paper, called breadfruit tapa

Disclaimer:
The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplements, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.

Resources:
http://www.stuartxchange.com/Rimas.html
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Breadfruit

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Siit (Caesalpinia sumatrana Roxb.)

Botanical Name :Caesalpinia sumatrana Roxb.
Family :Fabaceae / Leguminosae
Scientific names : Mesoneuron sumatranum (Roxb.) W. & A. ,Caesalpinia sumatrana Roxb.,Mezoneuron rubrum Merr. ,Mezoneuron sulfureum.
Common names :Siit (Tag.) ,Cat’s claw (Engl.)

Habitat :Siit is found in thickets at low altitude in Palawan. It also occurs in the Malay Peninsula, Singapore, Sumatra, and Borneo.

Description:

This plant is a robust, prickly climber, 6 to 10 meters in length. The leaves are 30 centimeters or more in length, and compound. The pinnae are 6, about 10 centimeters long. The leaflets are firm, oblong or obovate-oblong, 5 to 8 centimeters in length, and 2.5 to 3.5 centimeters wide. The racemes are forked, as long as the leaves, hairy, and obtuse at the tip. The calyx is smooth and 1 to 1.3 centimeters long, with upper teeth minute, the lowest rather longer, and the tube splitting off the insertion of the glabrous filaments. The petals are a little exserted, reddish-yellow, much narrower than in Mezoneurum latisiliquum, permanently imbricated, and oblanceolate-spatulate. The pods are thin, about 15 centimeters long, 4 to 5.5 centimeters wide, and furnished with a moderately broad wing, and contain 4 to 5 seeds.
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Constituents:
According to Burkill, the active substance is a saponin, which has a weak, destructive action if brought into contact with the blood. Boorsma reports that in the leaf and bark, a weak alkaloid is present, which in an experiment failed to kill a frog.


Medicinal Uses:

Parts Used :Leaves

Burkill and Haniff state that the Malays use it medicinally, giving decoctions of the leaves as a vermifuge, and for intestinal complaints such as diarrhea; also, they administer it after childbirth.

Folkloric
• The Malays use is medicinally.
Decoction of leaves used as a vermifuge, for intestinal complaints.
• Also used after childbirth.

Disclaimer:
The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplements, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.


Resources:

http://bpi.da.gov.ph/Publications/mp/html/s/siit.htm
http://www.stuartxchange.com/Siit.html

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Blechnum orientale Linn.

Botanical Name : Blechnum orientale Linn.
Family: Blechnaceae
Synonym(s): Blechnopsis orientalis (L.) Presl.
English Name: Shield Fern
Local name:
Pakong-alagdan (Tag.).

Habitat
: Pakong-alagdan is widely distributed in the Philippines. It is also found throughout India, Ceylon, and the Malay Peninsula and extends to the Malay Islands, tropical Asia, Polynesia, and Australia.

Description:
A robust fern. Caudex stout, erect, stipes 70 cm long, bearing small auricles; fronds 150 cm long, pinnae numerous, close, oblique; sori in a long continuous line close to the midrib.

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The caudex is stout, erect and densely covered with glossy brown scales. The stipes are erect, 10 to 40 centimeters long. The fronds are 20 to 200 centimeters long and 10 to 40 centimeters wide. The pinnae are 5 to 20 centimeters long and 0.5 to 2 centimeters wide and sessile. The sori are arranged in a long continuous line close to the costre.

Constituents and properties:-
Considered anthelmintic, antiviral, contraceptive and tonic.
Phytochemistry showed essential oil, phenolic compounds and triterpenoids.

Medicinal uses:

Folkloric
Used as poultife for boils.
Used for urinary complaints.
In China, the rhizomes are used as anthelmintic.
The Malays eat them.
In India, used for impotence; boils in infants and older children, diarrhea,
Used to stop wound bleeding.
In Malaysia, used for abscesses, blisters and sores; poultice of young leaves for furuncles and boils.
One of the plants used for fungal skin infections, esp ringworm: Plant is pounded with some kerosene and applied to affected areas. (source)
In Papua New Guinea, new fronds are eaten to induce sterility in women. (source)

Studies
:-
• Antibacterial: Antibacterial effect could come from the bioactive constituents of essential oil, phenolic compounds and triterpenoids.Study showed antibacterial activity, greatest against P vulgaris and less with B subtilis and S aureus.
• Studies on immunomodulatory and anthelmintic properties.
• Blechnum orientale is one of the herbal components of Blechni Rhizoma, an anti-viral formulation. (souirce)
Cytotoxicity / Breast Cancer: In vitro studies on the cytotoxic potential of three plants – Blechnum orientale, Tectaria singaporeana and Tacca integrifolia showed the roots displayed the highest cell mortality. All three plants – roots, leaves and stems – showed cytotoxic potential.
• Polyphenols / Antioxidative / Antibacterial: Study of the leaf extracts of five medicinal ferns – A aureum, Asplenium nidus, Blechnum orientale, C barometz and D linearis– showed B orientale to possess the highest amount of total polyphenols and strongest potential as antioxidant, tyrosinase inhibition and antibacterial.

Click to see : Blechnum Orientale Linn – a fern with potential as antioxidant, anticancer and antibacterial agent

Herb Effects:Antiviral, anthelmintic, female contraceptive.

According to Caius the rhizomes are used in China as an anthelmintic. Burkill reports that the Malays eat them. They also poultice boils with them. Hooper found the rhizome among drugs from Chinese pharmacies in the Straits. It seems that the Chinese use it in urinary complaints.

Disclaimer:
The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplements, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.

Resources:
http://www.impgc.com/plantinfo_A.php?id=698
http://www.2010taipeiexpo.tw/ct.asp?xItem=39619&ctNode=5719&mp=3
http://www.fernsiam.com/FernWorld/Taxonomy/BLECHNACEAE/Blechnum/
http://www.bpi.da.gov.ph/Publications/mp/pdf/p/pakong-alagdan.pdf

http://www.bpi.da.gov.ph/Publications/mp/html/p/pakong-alagdan.htm

http://www.stuartxchange.com/Pakong-alagdan.html

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Ramie

Botanical Name :Boehmeria nivea
Family : Urticaceae
Genus : Boehmeria
Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Magnoliophyta
Class: Magnoliopsida
Order: Urticales
Species: B. nivea

Synonyms : Boehmeria tenacissima – Gaud.
Common names: Chinese grass, false nettle

Habitat: E. Asia – China to the Himalayas of Bhutan, Sikkim and Nepal. Rocky places to 1200 metres. A very common plant in China, growing in thickets, roadsides, edges of forests in mountains at elevations of 200 – 1700 metres.Woodland Garden; Sunny Edge; Dappled Shade; Cultivated Beds;

Description:
It is a herbaceous perennial growing to 1–2.5 m tall; the leaves are heart-shaped, 7–15 cm long and 6–12 cm broad, and white on the underside with dense small hairs—this gives it a silvery appearance; unlike nettles, the hairs do not sting. The true ramie or China Grass also called Chinese plant or white ramie is the Chinese cultivated plant. A second type, is known as green ramie or rhea and is believed to have originated in the Malay Peninsula. This type has smaller leaves which are green on the underside, and it appears to be better suited to tropical conditions

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It is hardy to zone 7 and is frost tender. It is in flower from September to October. The flowers are monoecious (individual flowers are either male or female, but both sexes can be found on the same plant)
The plant prefers light (sandy) soils and requires well-drained soil. The plant prefers acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils and can grow in very acid soil. It can grow in semi-shade (light woodland) or no shade. It requires dry or moist soil.

History
Ramie has been around for so long that it was even used in mummy cloths in Egypt during the period 5000–3300 BC and has been grown in China for many centuries. In the study of the “Lazarus” mummy, three types of textiles were found. The outermost cloth was heavy and coarsely woven; the innermost was the lightest and most tightly woven. The outer cloth appeared to be ramie (which Wiseman notes “contains non-fibrous material that is toxic to bacteria and fungi”—in other words, an ideal textile for mummymaking). Farmers in ancient China are also known to have used the fiber to weave clothing.

Ramie was used to produce an open weave fabric called mechera, used for shirts and dressing gowns suitable for warm climates. The French painter Raoul Dufy designed in the early 20th century patterns for prints on mechera used by the French shirtmaker Charvet.

Brazil began production in the late 1930s with production peaking in 1971. Since then, production has steadily declined as a result of competition with alternative crops, such as soybeans and the important synthetic fibres.

Properties
Ramie is one of the strongest natural fibres. It exhibits even greater strength when wet. Ramie fibre is known especially for its ability to hold shape, reduce wrinkling, and introduce a silky lustre to the fabric appearance. It is not as durable as other fibres, and so is usually used as a blend with other fibres such as cotton or wool. It is similar to flax in absorbency, density and microscopic appearance. However it will not dye as well as cotton. Because of its high molecular crystallinity, ramie is stiff and brittle and will break if folded repeatedly in the same place; it lacks resiliency and is low in elasticity and elongation potential.

Cultivation
Requires a rich warm sandy soil that is very well drained. Intolerant of wet soils. This is a very greedy plant and can soon impoverish a soil. All plant remains, after the fibre has been removed, should be returned to the soil. Does best in areas with high temperatures and high humidity plus a rainfall of 1100cm evenly distributed throughout the year. Tolerates a pH in the range 4.3 to 7.3. This species is fairly hardy in Britain when dormant, though it may require some protection in winter (a good mulch to protect the roots should be sufficient). The young growth in spring, even on mature plants, is frost-tender and so it is best to grow the plants in a position sheltered from the early morning sun[K]. The plant has been growing for many years in a sunny well-drained bed at Cambridge Botanical Gardens (which has low humidity and low rainfall), it has made a clump over 2 metres wide though it only reaches about 1.5 metres in height. Boehmeria nivea, an extremely variable species, is widespread over large areas of subtropical and tropical Asia. Its complex species includes several infraspecific taxa, four varieties of which are found in China. The sub-species B. nivea tenacissima. (Gaud.)Miquel., which produces the fibre ‘Rhea’ is a native of Malaysia and is not hardy in Britain. Rami is much cultivated in China for its fibre, with a history of cultivation going back at least 3000 years. It is also occasionally cultivated for its fibre or as an ornamental plant in Europe. A very greedy plant, it requires a lot of feeding if it is to perform well.

Propagation
Seed – sow spring in a warm greenhouse and only just cover the seed. When they are large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in the greenhouse for at least their first winter. Plant them out into their permanent positions in late spring or early summer, after the last expected frosts. Division in spring. Very easy, larger divisions can be planted straight into their permanent positions whilst smaller clumps are best potted up and kept in a cold frame until they are growing away well. Layering. Basal cuttings in late spring. Harvest the shoots when they are about 10 – 15cm long with plenty of underground stem. Pot them up into individual pots and keep them in light shade in a cold frame or greenhouse until they are rooting well. Grow them on for their first winter in the cold frame and then plant them out in the summer.

General Uses:
A fibre is obtained from the inner bark of the stem – of excellent quality, it is used for textiles, linen etc and is said to be moth-proof. Yields are from 375 to 900 kilos of fibre (per acre?). Two to four harvests per year are possible depending upon the climate, it is harvested as the stems turn brown. Best harvested as the female flowers open according to another report. The outer bark is removed and then the fibrous inner bark is taken off and boiled before being woven into thread. The fibres are the longest known in the plant realm. The tensile strength is 7 times that of silk and 8 times that of cotton, this is improved on wetting the fibre. The fibre is also used for making paper. The leaves are removed from the stems, the stems are steamed and the fibres stripped off. The fibres are cooked for 2 hours with lye, fresh material might require longer cooking, and they are then beaten in a Hollander beater before being made into paper.

Despite its strength, ramie has had limited acceptance for textile use. The fibre’s extraction and cleaning are expensive, chiefly because of the several steps—involving scraping, pounding, heating, washing, or exposure to chemicals. Some or all are needed to separate the raw fibre from the adhesive gums or resins in which it is ensheathed. Spinning the fibre is made difficult by its brittle quality and low elasticity; and weaving is complicated by the hairy surface of the yarn, resulting from lack of cohesion between the fibres. The greater utilization of ramie depends upon the development of improved processing methods.

Ramie is used to make such products as industrial sewing thread, packing materials, fishing nets, and filter cloths. It is also made into fabrics for household furnishings (upholstery, canvas) and clothing, frequently in blends with other textile fibres (for instance when used in admixture with wool, shrinkage is reported to be greatly reduced when compared with pure wool.) Shorter fibres and waste are used in paper manufacture.

For the 2010 Prius, Toyota will begin using a new range of plant-derived ecological bioplastics made from the cellulose in wood or grass instead of petroleum. One of the two principal crops used is ramie.

Ramie is also used as an ornamental plant in eastern Asia.

Producers
China leads in the production of ramie and exports mainly to Japan and Europe. Other producers include Japan, Taiwan, the Philippines, and Brazil.[7] Only a small percentage of the ramie produced is available on the international market. Japan, Germany, France and the UK are the main importers, the remaining supply is used domestically.

Edible Uses
Edible Parts: Leaves; Root.

Root – peeled and boiled. A pleasant, sweet taste. We can detect very little flavour, but the root has a very strange mucilaginous texture that does not appeal to most people who have tried it. Once in the mouth, it takes a lot of chewing before it is ready to be swallowed. The leaves are used for making cakes. This report could refer to the plants use as a poultice.

Medicinal Actions & Uses
Antiphlogistic; Astringent; Demulcent; Diuretic; Febrifuge; Haemostatic; Poultice; Resolvent; Vulnerary; Women’s complaints.

Antiphlogistic, demulcent, diuretic, febrifuge, haemostatic and vulnerary. Used to prevent miscarriages and promote the drainage of pus. The leaves are astringent and resolvent. They are used in the treatment of fluxes and wounds..The leaves are used in the treatment of fluxes and wounds. The root is used to prevent miscarriages and promote the drainage of pus. The root contains the flavonoid rutin. It is antiabortifacient, antibacterial, cooling, demulcent, diuretic, resolvent and uterosedative. It is used in the treatment of threatened abortions, colic of pregnancy, haemorrhoids, leukorrhoea, impetigo etc. The fresh root is pounded into a mush and used as a poultice.

Known Hazards : Although members of the nettle family, plants in this genus do not have stinging hairs.

Disclaimer:The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplements, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.

Resources:
http://www.pfaf.org/database/plants.php?Boehmeria+nivea
http://www.calflora.org/cgi-bin/species_query.cgi?where-calrecnum=1103
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ramie
http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Category:Boehmeria_nivea

http://www.herbnet.com/Herb%20Uses_RST.htm

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Jack fruit

Botanical Name : Artocarpus heterophyllus
Family:    Moraceae
Tribe:    Artocarpeae
Genus:    Artocarpus
Species:    A. heterophyllus
Kingdom:    Plantae
Order:    Rosales

Common Name : Jackfruit

Other Names: Kanthal (in Bengali)

Habitat :  THE JACKFRUIT is native to the dense forests of the Western Ghats, but it is now common throughout Asia, Africa and the tropical regions of the Americas.

The Jackfruit (Artocarpus heterophyllus) is a species of tree of the mulberry family (Moraceae) and its fruit, native to southwestern India and Sri Lanka, and possibly also east to the Malay Peninsula, though more likely an early human introduction there.

In India It is believed to have originated in the southwestern rain forests of India, in present-day Goa, Kerala, coastal Karnataka, and Maharashtra.

Description:  It is an evergreen tree growing to 10-15 m tall. The leaves are alternately arranged, elliptical, 5-25 cm long and 3-12 cm broad, often lobed on young trees but entire on mature trees. The flowers are produced in dense inflorescences 3-7 cm long and 1-2.5 cm broad; the male and female flowers produced on separate inflorescences, the female inflorescences commonly borne on thick branches or the trunk of the tree (cauliflory).

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The fruit is huge, seldom less than about 25 cm in diameter. Even a relatively thin tree (circa 10 cm) can have huge fruits hanging on it. The fruits can reach 36 kg in weight and up to 90 cm long and 50 cm in diameter. The jackfruit is the largest tree borne fruit in the world.

The jackfruit tree is a widely cultivated and popular food item throughout the tropical regions of the world. Jackfruit is the national fruit of Bangladesh, by name Kanthal  in Bengali language. The Jackfruit tree can produce about 100 to 200 fruits in a year.

The sweet yellow sheaths around the seeds are about 3-5 mm thick and have a taste similar to pineapple but milder and less juicy.

Cultivation and uses
Jackfruit is widely grown in South and Southeast Asia. It is also grown in parts of central and eastern Africa, Brazil, and Suriname. It is the national fruit of Bangladesh and Indonesia.

The jackfruit has played a significant role in the Indian agriculture (and culture) from times immemorial. Archeological findings in India have revealed that jackfruit was cultivated in India 3000 to 6000 years ago. Findings also indicate that Indian Emperor Ashoka the Great (274 – 237 BC) encouraged arbori-horticulture of various fruits including jackfruit. Varahamihira, the famous Indian astronomer, mathemetician, and astrologer wrote a chapter on the treatment of trees in his Brhat Samhita. One of the highlights of his treatise is a specific reference on grafting to be done on trees such as jackfruit. A method of grafting described was what is known today as ‘wedge grafting’. One of the earliest descriptions of the jackfruit is to be found in the 16th century memoirs of the Mughal Emperor Babar, who was not much enamored of it:

“The jackfruit is unbelievably ugly and bad tasting. It looks exactly like sheep intestines turned inside out like stuffed tripe. It has a cloyingly sweet taste. Inside it has seeds like hazelnuts that mostly resemble dates, but these seeds are round, not long. The flesh of these seeds, which is what is eaten, is softer than dates. It is sticky, and for that reason some people grease their hands and mouths before eating it. The fruit is said to grow on the branches, the trunk, and the roots of the tree and looks like stuffed tripe hung all over the tree”.

The jackfruit is something of an acquired taste, but it is very popular in many parts of the world. A unopened ripe fruit can have a unpleasant smell, like rotting onions. The lightbrown to black seeds with white innards are indeed about the size of dates. People often oil their hands with coconut oil, kerosene/parafin before preparing jackfruit, as the rest of the mass of the fruit is a loose white mass that bleeds a milky sticky sap, often used as glue.

Unripe jackfruit  is cooked and  eaten in Bengal..as vegetable curry..the curry is very popular  and tasty.

Commercial availability

A kutiyapi, made of jackfruit wood. The jackfruit bears fruit three years after planting.

In the United States and Europe, the fruit is available in shops that sell exotic products, usually sold canned with a sugar syrup or frozen. It is also obtained fresh from Asian food markets. Sweet jackfruit chips are also often available.

The wood is used for the production of musical instruments in Indonesia as part of the gamelan and in the Philippines, where its soft wood can be made into the hull of a kutiyapi, a type of Philippine boat lute. It is also used to make the body of the Indian drums mridangam and kanjira. It is also widely used for manufacture of furniture.
Toxicity: Even in India there is some resistance to the jackfruit, attributed to the belief that overindulgence in it causes digestive ailments. Burkill declares that it is the raw, unripe fruit that is astringent and indigestible. The ripe fruit is somewhat laxative; if eaten in excess it will cause diarrhea. Raw jackfruit seeds are indigestible due to the presence of a powerful trypsin inhibitor. This element is destroyed by boiling or baking.

Other Uses

Fruit:

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In some areas, the jackfruit is fed to cattle. The tree is even planted in pastures so that the animals can avail themselves of the fallen fruits. Surplus jackfruit rind is considered a good stock food.

Leaves: Young leaves are readily eaten by cattle and other livestock and are said to be fattening. In India, the leaves are used as food wrappers in cooking, and they are also fastened together for use as plates.

Seeds:

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The seeds, which appeal to all tastes, may be boiled or roasted and eaten, or boiled and preserved in sirup like chestnuts. They have also been successfully canned in brine, in curry, and, like baked beans, in tomato sauce. They are often included in curried dishes. Roasted, dried seeds are ground to make a flour which is blended with wheat flour for baking.

Latex: The latex serves as birdlime, alone or mixed with Ficus sap and oil from Schleichera trijuga Willd. The heated latex is employed as a household cement for mending chinaware and earthenware, and to caulk boats and holes in buckets. The chemical constituents of the latex have been reported by Tanchico and Magpanlay. It is not a substitue for rubber but contains 82.6 to 86.4% resins which may have value in varnishes. Its bacteriolytic activity is equal to that of papaya latex.

LICK TO SEE : How to Remove Jackfruit Sticky Latex Juice

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Wood: Jackwood is an important timber in Ceylon and, to a lesser extent, in India; some is exported to Europe. It changes with age from orange or yellow to brown or dark-red; is termite proof, fairly resistant to fungal and bacterial decay, seasons without difficulty, resembles mahogany and is superior to teak for furniture, construction, turnery, masts, oars, implements, brush backs and musical instruments. Palaces were built of jackwood in Bali and Macassar, and the limited supply was once reserved for temples in Indochina. Its strength is 75 to 80% that of teak. Though sharp tools are needed to achieve a smooth surface, it polishes beautifully. Roots of old trees are greatly prized for carving and picture framing. Dried branches are employed to produce fire by friction in religious ceremonies in Malabar.

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From the sawdust of jackwood or chips of the heartwood, boiled with alum, there is derived a rich yellow dye commonly used for dyeing silk and the cotton robes of Buddhist priests. In Indonesia, splinters of the wood are put into the bamboo tubes collecting coconut toddy in order to impart a yellow tone to the sugar. Besides the yellow colorant, morin, the wood contains the colorless cyanomaclurin and a new yellow coloring matter, artocarpin, was reported by workers in Bombay in 1955. Six other flavonoids have been isolated at the National Chemical Laboratory, Poona.

Bark: There is only 3.3% tannin in the bark which is occasionally made into cordage or cloth.

Dishes and preparations
Jackfruit is commonly used in South and Southeast Asian cuisines. It can be eaten unripe (young) or ripe, and cooked or uncooked. The seeds can also be used in certain recipes.

Unripe (young) jackfruit is also eaten whole, cooked as a vegetable. Young jackfruit has a mild flavour and distinctive texture. The cuisines of India, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Indonesia, and Vietnam use cooked young jackfruit. In many cultures, jackfruit is boiled and used in curries as a food staple.

The tree is common in hundreds of thousands of Indian homes, and it provides food and shade along vast stretches of our national highways, riverbanks and railways.In India it is eaten as vegetable when green and as delicious fruit when ripen.

It provides shade to cash crops like coffee, betel nut, cardamom and pepper that need it.

The ripe fruit smells like rotting onions from the outside, but the fruit flesh inside smells like banana or pineapple. Unripe fruit can be sliced and cooked like green plantain.

The sticky smelly latex it exudes when cut is difficult to wash away, so it is wise to rub the knife and palms with oil before getting down to dicing and slicing.

The ripe fruit bulbs are delicious raw or as ice cream, jelly, chutney, syrup and jam.

The pulp, when boiled in milk, yields delicious orange-toned custard, while frying dry, salted bulbs serves up an alternative to potato chips.

The Central Food Technological Research Institute (CFTRI), Mysore, is a world leader in devising methods to preserve and candy jackfruit pulp.

They came up with a canning method that lets the fruit retain its beta-carotene content for up to two years.

The pulp yields heady liquor when fermented. The seeds can be curried, eaten roasted, soaked in sweet syrup, or even ground up to yield flour for blending with wheat flour.

According to traditional Chinese medicine, eating the ripe fruit counteracts the harmful effects of alcohol on the body.

The fruit is nearly as calorie-dense as the custard apple. Hundred grams of the edible flesh, including the seeds, contains almost 100 calories, most of it as sugar and starch.

The flesh is rich in beta-carotene and potassium, while the seeds are rich in thiamine and riboflavin-B vitamins.

Eating uncooked, unripe fruit can cause indigestion; the culprit is an enzyme that inhibits the gut’s protein-digesting enzyme, trypsin. Cooking destroys this inhibitor.

The ripe fruit increases gut motility and can cause diarrhoea in those who eat too much of it.

Chemical constituents:
Jackwood contains morin and a crystalline constituent, cyanomaclurin, probably isomeric with catechins.

Medicinal properties:
· Root: antiasthmatic.
· Ripe fruit: demulcent, nutritive, laxative.
· Unripe fruit: astringent.
· Pulp or flesh: surrounding the seed is aromatic, cooling and tonic.

Uses:
Nutrition

High carbohydrate content. The young fruit is also a vegetable. The pulp (lamukot) surrounding the seeds is sweet and aromatic, rich in vitamin C, eaten fresh or cooked or preserved. The seeds are boiled or roasted. The unripe fruit can be pickled.
Folkloric
· Skin diseases, ulcers and wounds: Mix the burnt ashes of leaves (preferably fresh) with coconut oil, and as ointment, apply to affected areas.
· Diarrhea, fever and asthma: A decoction of the root (preferably chopped into small pieces before boiling) of the tree, three to four cups daily.
· Glandular swelling and snake bites: Apply the milky juice of the tree. When mixed with vinegar, it is especially beneficial for glandular swelling and abscesses, promoting absorption and suppuration.
· The ripe fruit is laxative; in large quantities, it produces diarrhea.
· The roasted seeds believed to have aphrodisiac properties.
Others
· Fruit used to flavor and age lambanog believed to increased alcohol potency.
· Tree latex is used as bird lime; and heated makes a good cement for china.

Jack fruit is a common medicinal tree in this part of Chhattisgarh in India. The herb collectors use its bark for cracks in Lips. In form of aqueous paste bark is applied. The herb collectors extract the juice from Ama (Mango) and Kathal (Jack fruit) bark and mix it in equal ratio. In this combination, Chuna (Lime water) pani is added and used internally in treatment of dysentery.

The Chinese consider jackfruit pulp and seeds tonic, cooling and nutritious, and to be “useful in overcoming the influence of alcohol on the system.” The seed starch is given to relieve biliousness and the roasted seeds are regarded as aphrodisiac. The ash of jackfruit leaves, burned with corn and coconut shells, is used alone or mixed with coconut oil to heal ulcers. The dried latex yields artostenone, convertible to artosterone, a compound with marked androgenic action. Mixed with vinegar, the latex promotes healing of abscesses, snakebite and glandular swellings. The root is a remedy for skin diseases and asthma. An extract of the root is taken in cases of fever and diarrhea. The bark is made into poultices. Heated leaves are placed on wounds. The wood has a sedative property; its pith is said to produce abortion.

The Chinese were among the first to recognise the nutrition potential of the seeds, but their views on the aphrodisiacal (?) nature of the seeds are not rooted in reality.

In other cultures, the ash of the leaves is a traditional antiseptic. The latex is a folk cure for snakebites, abscesses and lymph node swelling.

Root decoction is an old cure for fever, diarrhoea, asthma and skin diseases.

Disclaimer : The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplement, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.

Resources:.hinduonnet.com. , en.wikipedia and .hort.purdue.edu and http://www.stuartxchange.org/Langka.html

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