Monday, May 31, 2010

Ficus religiosa (Sacred Fig)

Young tree, height : 2 m (6.5 ft)

Medium tree

Common names : Sacred Fig, Bo Tree.
Local names : Pipal (Hindi),  Vá¹›iksha (Sanskrit),  Assattha (Pali).
Family: Moraceae

Ficus religiosa is a species of banyan fig tree native to India, Nepal, Southeast Asia, IndoChina and Southwest China. It is a large semi evergreen tree which can grow up to 30 m (100 ft) in height (with a trunk diameter of up to 3 m or 10 ft). The leaves are 10-17 cm (4-7 inch) long and 8-12 (3-5 inch) broad eith a 5-10 ( 2.5 -4 inch) petiole.

This plant is considered sacred by the adherents of Hinduism, Buddhism and Jainism. It is said that under this tree Siddhartha Gautama achieved enlightenment.