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______tree is known as “flame of the forest”?
A. Zizyphus
B. Butea monosperma
C. Jackfruit
D. Pongamia

Last updated date: 19th Jun 2024
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Hint: During the spring, the flowers of “flame of the forest” are bright orange and seem like a brightly lit torch. These flowers are visible from distance like a flame. These trees bear more flowers than leaves.

Complete answer: Butea monosperma is also known as Palash tree, dhaak, moduga, etc. It belongs to the family Leguminosae. This tree is native to India, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and Nepal.
Features of this tree are as follows:
a) It is small-sized and attains approx. 15 metres in height. It is a deciduous tree having fast growth.
b) Leaves are pinnate, petioles ($7-14$ cm), three leaflets and pod fruit.
c) The leaves are used to make leaf-plate and dye are obtained from flowers. Gum is also extracted from the tree and is used in leather industries.
d) Flowers are bright, orange in colour with raceme inflorescence.
e) Due to the bright and showy appearance, this tree is known as “flame of the forest”.
Hence, the correct answer is option B.

Additional information: Seeds, flowers, gums and leaves have various medicinal uses along with the aesthetic value. These medicinal benefits include multiple antimicrobial, anti-tumour, anti-diabetic anti-inflammatory and other medicinal properties. Plants of this species are native to tropical and subtropical parts of the Indian Subcontinent and Southeast Asia.

Note: The juice extracted from the flowers is used as holi colours (Kesari) and to worship Lord Shiva. Leaves are leathery in touch and used to serve food by earlier people. Thus, this tree has certain cultural associations.