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Curcuma pseudomontana (hill turmeric)

Hill turmeric is an Indian herb used in local and tribal medicine and as a source of arrowroot starch.
Curcuma pseudomontana (hill turmeric) flower

Curcuma pseudomontana (hill turmeric) (Photo: Dr Sachin A. Punekar, Biospheres)

Species information

Scientific name: 

Curcuma pseudomontana J.Graham

Common name: 

hill turmeric (English); kachura (Hindi); kattumanjal (Tamil)

Conservation status: 

Near Threatened (NT) according toIUCN Red List criteria.

Habitat: 

Moist deciduous and semi-evergreen forest.

Key Uses: 

Food, medicine.

Known hazards: 

None known.

Taxonomy

Subclass: 
Superorder: 
Lilianae
Order: 
Zingiberales
Family: 
Zingiberaceae
Genus: Curcuma

About this species

Hill turmeric is only found in the Western and Eastern Ghats of India, where it is used for the production of arrowroot powder (a starch normally obtained from Maranta arundinacea or Curcuma angustifolia) and in local and tribal medicine.

A genus within the ginger family (Zingiberaceae), Curcuma contains nearly 100 species, including turmeric (Curcuma longa), the underground stems of which are the source of the bright yellow spice. The name Curcuma comes from the Arabic kurkum meaning turmeric.

Synonym: 

Curcuma grahamiana Voigt, Curcuma ranadei Prain

Genus: 
Curcuma

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