Finlaysonia obovata   Wall.  (Plant)
Organism information awaits expert curation
Class: Dicotyledonae

A monotypic genus (represented by a single species) easily distinguished in the field by its stout reddish-brown twining stems, foetid flowers, and divaricate winged follicles. The species is treated by some under a separate family Periplocaceae.

A large spreading climber, stems glabrous with milky latex. Leaves opposite, 5-16.5 x 3-6 cm, broadly obovate, leathery, rounded or emarginate at apex, cuneate at base. Flowers in axillary trichotomously branched cymes, 3-4 mm across, white or purple. Fruit a follicle, 7-9 x 4-5 cm, ovoid, divaricate, 2-3 winged, narrowed into a curved beak at apex; seeds 2.5-3 cm long, ovoid, flattened, with a tuft of silky long hairs.

Flowering and fruiting from October-March, April-November (West Bengal), November-April (Orissa).

Synonym (s)

Common Name (s)
• Dudi Lata (Bengali)
• Kansharinata (Oriya)
• Dudhi Lata
• Latarai
• Khasai Lata
Economic Importance and Threats
Importance:  Commercial
(The leaves are used for relief from asthma in Bengal and Orissa.)

Habitat:  Estuarine, Coastal
Trophic Level:  Producer


• West Bengal, Sundarbans INDIA
• Orissa, Mahanadi INDIA
• Malacca MALAYSIA
• West Bengal INDIA
• Orissa INDIA
• Tamil Nadu INDIA
• Andaman and Nicobar Islands INDIA
• Andaman and Nicobar Islands, South Andaman INDIA
• Orissa, Mahanadi Delta INDIA
• Orissa, False Point INDIA
• Orissa, Bhitarkanika INDIA

Literature Source(s)
  • Banerjee, LK; Sastry, RK and Nayar MP (1989) Mangroves in India: Identification manual Botanical survey of India, Calcutta, India Available at - NIO, Goa
  • Mangroves of India NIO's database on marine life of India (NIODMLI) Available at -
  • Debnath, HS (2004) Mangroves of Andaman & Nicobar Islands: Taxonomy and ecology Bishen Singh Mahendra Pal Singh, Dehra Dun, India 133 pp Available at - NIO, Goa
  • Rajendra N and Sanjeevi SB (2004) Flowering plants and fern in mangrove ecosystems of India: An identification manual ENVIS centre, Annamalai University, Parangipettai, Tamil Nadu, India. 110 Available at - NIO, Goa
  • Veenakumari, K and Prashanth, M (2009) A note on the entomofauna of mangrove associates in the Andaman Islands (Indian Ocean: India) Journal of Natural History Taylor and Francis Ltd 43 807-823 Available at -
  • Kumar, VS (2005) An overview of mangroves in Andamans and its significance in maintenance of natural ecosystem Proceedings of the National Seminar on Reef Ecosystem Remediation SDMRI Special Research Publication No.9 200-212 Available at -
  • Banerjee, LK and Roa, TA (2001) Flora of the Mahanadi Delta, Orissa Botanical Survey of India 1-307 Available at - NIO,Goa

Page last updated on:2011-11-23

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