Capparis decidua

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Capparis decidua
Scientific classification edit
Kingdom: Plantae
Clade: Angiosperms
Clade: Eudicots
Clade: Rosids
Order: Brassicales
Family: Capparaceae
Genus: Capparis
C. decidua
Binomial name
Capparis decidua
  • Capparis aphylla Roth
  • Capparis decidua Pax
  • Capparis sodada R.Br. nom. illeg.
  • Sodada decidua Forssk.

Capparis decidua is commonly known as karira,[2] is a useful plant in its marginal habitat. Its spicy fruits are used for preparing vegetables, curry and fine pickles and can attract helpful insectivores; the plant also is used in folk medicine and herbalism. It can be used in landscape gardening, afforestation and reforestation in semidesert and desert areas; it provides assistance against soil erosion.[3]

Tree characteristics[edit]

It is a small much branched tree or shrub of arid regions in Africa, Middle East and southern Asia, including the Thar desertears a mass of slender, leafless branches, the small caducous leaves being found only on young shoots. It rarely exceeds a height of 5 meters (15 feet).[4]

Khair city has many Kair's trees in India. This city is famous for Kair trees.

The new flush of leaves appears in November–January. Red conspicuous flowers appear in March to April and August–September and ripe by May and October. The pink fleshy berries are readily eaten by birds. It coppices well and produces root suckers freely. It is extremely drought-resistant and tolerates some frost.[4]


Karir tree in Mahabharata[edit]

The Mahabharata Book VIII: Karna Parva, Chapter 30, verse 24 mentions tree species as Sami, Pilu and Karir tree species as under in Sanskrit and IAST:

शमी पीलु करीराणां वनेषु सुखवर्त्मसु (śamī pīlu karīrāṇāṃ vaneṣu sukhavartmasu)
अपूपान सक्तु पिण्डीश च खाथन्तॊ मदितान्विताः (apūpān saktu piṇḍīś ca khādanto mathitānvitāḥ)
Meaning - "When shall I be amongst those ladies eating cakes of flour and meat and balls of pounded barley mixed with skimmed milk, in the forests, having many pleasant paths of Sami and Pilu and Karira!" (VIII.30.24)



  1. ^ The Plant List: A Working List of All Plant Species, retrieved 4 June 2016
  2. ^ USDA GRIN Taxonomy, retrieved 4 June 2016
  3. ^ Kaul (1963), Ghosh (1977)
  4. ^ a b Burdak, L.R. (1982). Recent Advances in Desert Afforestation- Dissertation submitted to Shri R.N. Kaul, Director, Forestry Research, F.R.I., Dehra Dun. p.55


  • Kaul, R.N. (1963): Need for afforestation in the arid zones of Khair, India. LA-YAARAN 13.
  • Ghosh, R.C. (1977): Handbook on afforestation techniques. Khair, India.
  • Gupta, R.K. & Prakasah, Ishwar (1975): Environmental analysis of the Thar Desert. Dehra Dun.

External links[edit]