Bauhinia racemosa

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Bidi leaf tree
Jhinjheri (Bauhinia racemosa) leaves & fruit pods in Hyderabad, AP W IMG 7117.jpg
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
(unranked): Rosids
Order: Fabales
Family: Fabaceae
Genus: Bauhinia
Species: B. racemosum
Binomial name
Bauhinia racemosa
  • Bauhinia parviflora Vahl
  • Piliostigma racemosum (Lam.) Benth.
  • Piliostigma racemosa (Lam.) Benth.

Bauhinia racemosa, commonly known as the Bidi leaf tree 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.

Religious significance[edit]

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).[1]

Other uses[edit]

The leaves are used in the production of beedi, a thin Indian cigarette.[2]


  1. ^ Phalak, Paresh Prashant. "The Real Gold". Retrieved 25 October 2012. 
  2. ^ "Bidi Leaf Tree". Flowers of India. 

See also[edit]

External links[edit]

Media related to Piliostigma racemosum at Wikimedia Commons