Madhuca longifolia (L.) Macbr.

Madhuca longifolia (L.) Macbr. (SAPOTACEAE)
Common names
Kannada: Hippe, Ippigida.
Tulu: Ippe mara.
Malayalam: Elupi, Irippa.
Tamil: Illupei, Iruppai.
Telugu:  Ippa, Ippe-chettu.

Description: Deciduous trees, 10-12 m tall with milky juice, bark thick, dark brown, scaly; joung parts pinkish white, silky pubescent. Leaves clustered near the ends of the branches, linear lanceolate or broadly elliptic, cuneat at base, acute at apex, 7-15 x 4-7.5, glabrous when mature; main nerves 10-12 pairs; petioles 1-2 cm long. Flowers in dense clusters near the ends of the branches below the leaves, white, fragrant. Calyx 1-1,5 cm long, densely rusty pubescent, lobes 4. Corolla-tube fleshy, inflated, lobes 8, in 2-seriate. Stamens 16-20, in 3-seriate; filaments short. Ovary 8 -locular; style long. Fruit a berry, oblong or ovoid, ca 3 cm across, brown tomentose. Seeds 1-2, compressed, straight on one side, curved on the other.

Flowering : November – January.
Fruiting : January – May.

Distribution: India: Common in deciduous forests of Western Ghats at low elevations.  Sri Lanka, Myanmar.

Uses: The large fleshy cream-coloured corolla contains much sugar and are eaten either raw or cooked and a spirit is distilled from them. They are also used for the preparation of vinegar. The large greenish fruits have large fleshy cotyledons, from which a valuable oil (Madua butter, Illeppe butter) is extracted which is eaten and used for soap-making. Refined oil finds use in the manufacture of lubricating greases and fatty alcohols. The oil is also used for candles, as a batching oil in jute industry and as a raw material for the production of stearic acid. Madhuca berries are also eaten. Wood used for building purposes. Flowers are used as feed of livestocks; spent flowers after fermentation are also used as feed. Leaves are used as green manure. Madhuca cake is also used as manure. Madhuca cake possesses insecticidal properties and is also used as a fish poison. Root and bark used in ulcers; bark antidiabetic, astringent, emollient, used in gum troubles, tonsillitis; flower tonic, demulcent, laxative, stimulant, anthelmintic, antidote for snakebite, bechic, used in eye diseases, bronchitis; seed oil (Madua oil) galactogenic, anticephalalgic, emetic, used in skin diseases, piles, pneumonia, cold; seed oil and gum used in rheumatism. Bark used in stomach-ache of horses and bone fracture of cattle.