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Blackboard tree

Alstonia scholaris


This evergreen tree also known as the 'Indian Devil tree' with seven to nine leaves growing in clusters, almost looking like big green flowers all. The new leaves that looked fresh and vibrant as we advance into summer, have soon turned green. Alstonia scholaris or the Scholar’s tree belonging to the category of evergreen trees or shrubs with white funnel-shaped flowers and milky sap. A native of Indo-Malayan region, the genus is named after Professor C. Alston, a famous botanist of Edinburgh. The species has its origin in its use for making students’ black boards or slates. It is an ideal shady, easy to grow tree which is known to help control noise pollution in urban settings. Ayurveda finds the uses of Alstonia as a bitter and astringent herb for treating skin disorders, malarial fever, urticaria, chronic dysentery, diarrhea, in snake bite and for upper purification process of Panchakarma. Its bark, known as Dita Bark, is used in traditional medicine to treat dysentery and fever. Called Saptparni or the Shaitan Tree (Indian Devil Tree), the tree is reported to be grown across the country and in the Western Ghats, tribal people are reluctant to sit or pass under this tree, for the fear of the devil.


Great tree to have by my balcony, busy all day with a remarkable number of birds and squirrels visiting!!! Waiting to watch the tree bloom in October.

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Spotted by

Haryana, India

Spotted on Mar 14, 2013
Submitted on Mar 25, 2013

Spotted for Mission

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