Piliostigma racemosum, commonly known as the Bidi Leaf Tree (Hindi: कठमूली / झिंझेरी, Marathi: अपटा / सोना / श्वेत-कांचन, Tamil: ஆத்தி atti / தாதகி tataki, Malayalam: അരംപാലി arampaali / കുടബുളി kutabuli / മലയത്തി malayaththi, Telugu: తెల్ల ఆరెచెట్టు tella arecettu, Kannada: ಅಪ್ತಾ / ಅರಳುಕದುಮನ್ದರ, Bengali: banraji, banraj, Konkani: आप्टो apto, Urdu: Gul-e-anehnal, Sanskrit: यमलपत्रक / युग्मपत्र and Sinhalese: මයිල / Mayila), is a rare medicinal species of flowering shrub with religious significance. It is a small crooked tree with drooping branches that grows 3–5 metres (10–16 ft) tall and flowers between February and May. It is native to tropical Southeast Asia.
In Maharashtrian families it is customary to exchange leaves of the Aapta tree on the Hindu festive day of Dussehra. An act known as exchanging Gold—pointing to the special significance of the plant on that particular day. This is also why the tree is often referred to as Sonpatta (literal translation Leaves of Gold).
The leaves are used in the production of beedi, a thin Indian cigarette.
Media related to Piliostigma racemosum at Wikimedia Commons
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