The kalpavriksha originated during the Samudra manthan or "churning of the ocean of milk" along with the kamadhenu, the divine cow providing for all needs. The king of the gods, Indra, returned with this tree to his paradise.
A kalpavriksha is mentioned in the Sanskrit work Mānāsara as a royal emblem. In Hemādri's work Caturvargacīntama, the kalpavriksha is said to be a tree of gold and precious stones.
At Jyotirmath, Badrinath in Uttaranchal, renowned as the residence of Adiguru Shankaracharya, there is a large, ancient mulberry tree known locally as the kalpavriksha. This tree is a Morus tree, or mulberry. Its unique property is that it never loses a single leaf by itself and is evergreen.
The Banyan tree has been referred to as the kalpavriksha.
In certain parts of India, especially coastal areas, the coconut tree is referred to as kalpavriksha or kalpataru because of its ability to amply provide for human needs.