is a common tree in tropical rain forests of Western Ghats from Konkan
southwards, in Mysore, Coorg and Wyanad.
is a slender evergreen tree with drooping branches. Leaves are ovate
or oblong lanceolate, 6-10 cm long and 2.5-3.5 cm broad, dark green
above and pale beneath; fruits globose or spherical (2.5-3.5 cm dia),
dark purple when ripe enclosing 5-8 large seeds. It flowers in November-February
and the fruits ripen in April-May. The fruit has an agreeable flavour
and a sweetish taste.
contains 10% malic acid and a little tartaric and citric acid. It
is used as a garnish to give an acid flavour to curries and also for
preparing cooling syrups during hot months. It is used chiefly in
the form of 'kokam', prepared by drying the outer rind, soaking it
repeatedly in the juice of the pulp and sun-drying.
medicinal and other use use
fruit is antihelmintic acid and cardiotonic and useful in piles, dysentry,
tumours, pains and heart complaints. The fruit juice is given in bilious
affections. The root is astringent. An edible fat, known as 'kokam
butter'. It is considered nutritive, demulcent, astringent and emollient.
It is suitable for ointments, suppositories and other pharmaceutical