Common Name

Palas, Cheola, Dhak

Scientific Name

Butea monosperma (lamk) taub






May - June


A medium sized deciduous tree with tripliate leaves and black sepals and red petals. Grows well on clayey oil and can withstand water logging. The flowers are deep orange in colour. The fruit is one seeded, pendulous pod.

the seeds are medicinally used as a purgative and vermifuge. Fruits are astringent, aphrodisiae, diuretic, and used for anti- fertility, eye complaints, sun stroke and diabetes. Bark is used for treating minor, diarrhoea, dysentry. Root used for tuberculosis.

The wood is useless as timber. The leaves are good fodder for buffaloes though it is not liked by other animals. There is a saying in Punjabi that "Unt se a'k bakri se dhak" which means that camels shun the a'k (Calotropis procera) and the goats the dhak.

Leaves are used for making into platters and cups when they are young. The flowers which are also called "tesu" yield a safron dye for colouring cotton yarns. The flowers make 'gulal' used commonly during the Holi festival.




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