Butea superba is a large, evergreen climbing shrub with stems 20cm or more in diameter that can climb to the tops of large trees, twining around the branches for support[
The plant is harvested from the wild for local use as a source of fibre, gum and dyestuff.
E. Asia - India, Myanmar, Thailand, Cambodia, Laos, Vietnam.
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A gum obtained from the bark is astringent[
A gum is obtained from the plant[
]. A juice, which naturally exudes from cracks and wounds in the bark, hardens into a most beautiful, ruby-coloured, brittle, astringent gum. It dissolves perfectly in water and partially in spirit[
]. It is said to be similar to the gum obtained from B. monosperma[
The following is an account of the gum for B. Monosperma:-
A red exudate is obtained from the tannin-rich vesicles in the bark[
]. It hardens into a gum, known as Butea gum, or Bengal kino and can be used medicinally, as a dye or for tannin[
]. It occurs in the form of round tears, often fragmentary. It may be purified by solution in water. It is of a brilliant ruby-red colour, translucent and brittle, heat rendering it more so instead of melting it[
Infusions of the flowers are used as a dye. When applied to cotton cloth that has previously been impregnated with a solution of alum, a beautiful bright yellow is obtained; a little alkali changes it to a deep reddish orange[
A strong fibre is obtained from the roots and young branches[
The dark-brown wood is porous and very fibrous[
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