Thanks to its tropical climate, soil, landscape, peninsular shape and abundant water bodies that dot and streak across the country, India’s biodiversity is varied and dense. A wide variety of trees, plants and wildlife can thrive in India due to the distinct climatic zones that exist in the country. From tropical and dry to subtropical humid to mountain climate, the range in temperatures and elevations allow species of different kinds to survive. Below are a few trees that are native to the Indian sub-continent and are most commonly found in our forests:
Indian Mahogany (Swietania Mahogani)
The trunk of this tree is used to make furniture and musical instruments. Famous in the world for its durability and beautiful colour tones.
Ashoka Tree (Saraca Asoca)
Known for its evergreen, thick foliage, fragrant flowers and pointed top. It has beautiful flowers that bloom in bright yellow and orange in the months of February to April.
Gulmohar Tree (Delonix Regia)
The Gulmohar tree has large flamboyant orange flowers and a wide canopy for which reason it is known for its ornamental value. The wood of the Gulmohar tree is used to make agricultural implements, handles for carpentry tools, combs etc.
Curry Tree (Murraya Koenigii)
Tropical to sub-tropical is native to India and Sri Lanka. The leaves of this tree have also found their way into south Indian cooking and lend a distinct flavour and aroma to their cuisine. The tree also produces small black berries.
Peepal Tree (Ficus Religiosa)
An evergreen tree that is worshipped in many different Indian religions. Its distinguishing feature is its heart-shaped leaves with an extra drip that dance magically every time the wind runs through them.
Banyan Tree (Ficus Benghalensis)
The national tree of India, the Banyan tree has a large canopy and aerial prop roots. It is revered by Hindus and Buddhists alike and represents life and fertility.
Sal Tree (Shorea Robusta)
Native to the Indian sub-continent the Sal tree is known for its fine quality timber user to make furniture and other wood implements.
Arjuna Tree (Terminalia Arjuna)
Found on the banks of rivers this tree can be distinguished by its unusual fibrous woody fruit.
Neem Tree (Azadirachta Indica)
Neem is perhaps best known for its medicinal properties and is used in the preparation of making kinds of cosmetics such as shampoos, soaps, creams, ointments etc. It is also used to treat the pox virus and is used as a natural pesticide.