Melia dubia Cav., Diss. 7: 364 364 1789. (syn: Melia composita Willd.);

Kannada Heb-bevu, Betta Bevu, Heb bevu
Malayalam Aryaveppu, Valiyaveppu, Malaveppu, Malavemppu, Kattuveppu
Others Irula : Meentrai maram, Malaivembu
Tamil Malaivembu, Masaveppu, Malay Vembu


Deciduous trees, to 20 m high, bark 6-8 mm thick, dark brown, rough, lenticellate, exfoliations rectangular, long and broad, attached by the distal end, exfoliated surface brown; outer part pink, inner fibrous; young shoots and inflorescence scurfy tomentose. Leaves 2-3 pinnate, (rarely 1-pinnate), imparipinnate, attenuate, estipulate, rachis 10-30 cm long, terete, slender, swollen at base, scurfy tomentose when young; pinnae 3-7 pairs, 10-20 cm long; leaflets 2-11 on each pinnae, opposite, estipellate; petiolule 3-10 mm long, slender; lamina 4.5-9 x 2-4 cm, ovate-lanceolate, base oblique, acute, obtuse, round or attenuate, apex acuminate, margin crenate, glabrous at maturity, coriaceous; lateral nerves 6-10 pairs, pinnate, slender, prominent; intercostae reticulate, prominent. Flowers bisexual, 5-6 mm long, greenish-white, in axillary panicles; calyx lobes 5, 2 mm long, ovate, pubescent; petals 5, 7-10 x 1-3 mm, obovate, thick, simple, pubescent within; staminal tube 7 mm, white, scabrid, ribbed, apically dilated, 10-dentate, tooth 2-fid, mouth woolly; disc annular; anthers exserted; ovary superior, oblong 1 mm, 5-celled; ovules 2 per cell; style to 4.5 mm, terete; stigma capitate. Fruit a drupe, 2 x 1 cm, dorsally compressed with longitudinal ridges, yellow, fleshy; seeds 3 or 4, 1 cm.
Flowering and fruiting: March-February
Moist deciduous and semi-evergreen forests
Indo-Malesia to Australia
(From  India Biodiversity Portal (Melia dubia Cav. syn. Melia composita Willd.)


Images by tspkumar


TSPNOV2015-88-131: Images of Melia dubia (Meliaceae) : 7 posts by 3 authors. Attachments (6)

It is my pleasure to share few images of Melia dubia (Meliaceae 

Habit: A deciduous tree 

Habitat: Wild, occurring in waste lands  

Sighting: Chikmagalur and Tumkur, Karnataka about 800 msl 

Date: 22-02-2015, 23-02-2015 and 29-02-2015

very nice pictures, Thanks … never seen it. so googled. found out a lot but interesting  thing is that lots of nurseries sell the saplings, fast growing tree etc   … for wood demand that’s expected to increase in india

Thanks … You are right. It is a very popular farm-forestry species that is fast growing producing good biomass in a short period. The wood has very good peeling quality and as such sought after by plywood industry as well. Being a native no problem environmentally, but extensive areas under monocrop…..One should guard against…!

= Melia azedarach L., Sp. Pl. 1: 384. 1753.

Are you suggesting that the images uploaded in this thread are that of Melia azedarach…? I am sorry to disagree…!

Melia azedarach: Flora of Karnataka

Melia dubia: Flora of Karnataka

Kindly refer to another thread of mine TSPNOV2015-87-130: Images of Melia azedarach (Meliaceae) wherein I have uploaded images pertaining to Melia azedarach as well.

Oh, I am so sorry.



Melia dubia: 2 images.

Date/Time- May 2012

Location- Dandeli WLS

Habitat- Wild

Plant Habit- Tree

Height/Length- 15 meters

Leaves- Simple


Tree for ID : 14012013 : RV 1: Please help to ID this huge tree I saw yesterday in Pali, Maharashtra…… profusely flowering.

Melia dubia or Limbara.

Thanks for sharing this uncommon Meliaceae member. I haven’t got chance to observe this so far.


ID29032013phk1 : ID please?
A big sized tree at Kolad, Roha (Maharashtra)
29 March, 2013

Melia dubia is my guess!

Thanks … for a possible id. Was with … at Kolad over the weekend. It could be Melia dubia [now M.composita]. Please check this link

Supporting …

Melia dubia :  Attachments (1). 1 post by 1 author.

Melia dubia seedling.


Confusion about lesser known Melia composita or Melia dubia : 1 post by 1 author.

Pl. see the contradicting details in recent works:
efi thread (In Flora of Mah. by Dr. Almeida Vol I pg 227: Melia composita Willd. Sp. is described.
As mentioned in the volume the same was known as M. dubia Hiern in Hook.f., Fl. Brit. Ind. 1:545,1875 (non Cav.,1789); Talbot, Tress Bombay39, 1902; Woodrow in Journ. Bombay nat. Hist.Soc. 11: 269, 1897)
(if we believe useful plants of India Indian plant M. dubia Hiern. is different from M. dubia Cav. and correctly M. composita Willd.))

The Plant List (Melia composita Willd.- Unresolved)

GRIN (no link)

Annotated checklist of Flowering plants of Nepal (Melia dubia Cav.)

MMPND (Melia azedarach L. syn. Melia dubia Cav. ex M.Roem., Melia composita Willd.)

India Biodiversity Portal (Melia dubia Cav. syn. Melia composita Willd.) Wikipedia

Biotik (Melia dubia Cav. syn. Melia composita Willd.)

Forest Plants of Eastern India By Amal Bhusan Chaudhuri (1988-Melia dubia Cav. syn. Melia composita Willd.)

Flora of Eastern Ghats: Hill Ranges of South East India, Volume 1 By T. Pullaiah, D. Muralidhara Rao, K. Sri Ramamurthy
(2006- Description & Keys- Melia azedarach & Melia dubia Cav.)

If anyone knows more about it, Pl. clarify?

Tree For ID : Bannerghatta,Bangalore : 220913 : AK-1 :  Attachments (2). 9 posts by 5 authors.

Tree seen at Bannerghatta in Bangalore on 17/3/13.

Sorry I have only one picture taken from a distance.
Have cropped the flowers for a closer look.
Seems to be from the Neem family, Meliaceae.

This looks similar to one posted by … from Bangalore recently.

Can this be Chukrasia tabularis? As you said flowers are not clearly visible.

This definitely looks like the one unknown I have been trying to figure out for sometime now. Link

Seeing your post on eflora, I was reminded of my picture.

I too think they are the same tree

I am sorry. … plant does not look like Chukrasia tabularis.

Melia composita,  = Melia dubia


Request Tree ID 078 – Bangalore – RA: Looks familiar but not able to identify it.

Something from family Meilaceae???

This can be a Toona species…

Is it Chukrasia tabularis – Chikrasi

It is not C.tubularis. Images in google web do not match, especially the leaves shape and arrangement.

Today I looked at the fallen flowers and exactly look like the pictures in the

Only thing I have doubt is the leaves looked more like a bipinnate instead of a pinnate leaves of C. tubular is

Could this be a species of Melia?

I am also thinking on the same lines. Could be one of Melia species.

I found two trees exactly like this one.
The one in this is same as this one.

Fruit in one of the trees

This is Kakad [Garuga pinnata].

This is not garuga pinnata that I am very sure.
It has neem like flowers white and 2-3 pinnate leaves.
I thought its something like “melia dubia” but the fruits are little bigger and leaves are not not that serrated.

Both flowers and fruit in one

This, still, looks more like a Melia species to me. But fruits, as … mentioned, is bit bigger for Melia.

It is not Garuga pinnata as this plant (picture) has bi/tri-pinnately compound leaves as against the simple/uni pinnately compound leaves of G. pinnata.

Can somebody confirm its melia volkensii?

I spotted few more of them around my house.

But still cannot find a name for it.

Melia composita,  =Melia dubia

Melia composita.

Melia dubia Cav. : Attachments (2). 1 post by 1 author.

Melia dubia Cav.; Fam: Meliaceae

19/02/2013, Denkanikota, Tamilnadu 850m altitude,

wild tree flowering, wood having timber value

SMPAPR05 : 1 post by 1 author. Attachments (3)
Melia dubia
Family Meliaceae
Observed flowering and fruiting
March 2015 Velhe Near Pune Maharashtra






Cubbonbagh – Bangalore – RA – Is it Spondias pinnata?: I could not get a close shot of anything.

This is Kakad [Garuga pinnata].

Thanks …

I did take a picture of garuga pinnata in Lalbagh.
It had flowers and saw only one fruit.
The fruits are more darker green here than the one I saw in google results and the one I saw in Lalbagh.

These smelt like mango. So many of them have fallen down

garuga pinnata’s pictures in efi thread

Does not seem to be Garuga

Melia volkensii, Gurke

I think it is the above one

The leaves are different in Melia volkensii. Check the link at Ochanallianace


Thanks … I will try more googling

I think its Garuga Pinnata

I am positive that its is not garuga, as the leaves are 2-3 pinnate.

its some species of melia may be.

I think close to images at Melia dubia Cav.

Of course the pictures resemble M.dubia. But one has to check the older leaves as the young leaves are showing only 3 leaflets)  but it will be upto 5. In the older leaves leaflets are 5 – 7 (rarely  up to 11).  Please also check with these photographs (M.dubia) taken by me in Mysore.

Attachments (3)

Tree For ID : Bangalore : 02DEC16 : AK-4 : 19 posts by 7 authors. Attachments (4)

A tree seen in Bangalore with very few leaves and green fruits in bunches.

Garuga pinatta or another similar confusing species ?

I thought Melia azedarach

Thanks for the suggested ids. Now I am confused.

Adding a cropped picture of the leaves.

Not Garuga pinnata; leaves are typical Meliaceae,

yes i Think garuga pinatta or Neem plant

I think … may be right.

Adding more pictures of the same tree taken recently.

Hope these will help to identify it correctly.

It looks Like Azadirachta indica

I think it was Juglans Nigra….Please Check This One

Juglans nigra  black walnut Tree
They leaf out late and lose their leaves early due to anthracnose. Black walnuts have heavy fruits that can stain hands for many days. If I could overlook a fertile, northeast-facing slope I would plant walnut for their wonderful chocolate-brown bark with distinct diamond patterns, and let the nuts roll downhill to my neighbor. I can buy shelled walnuts at a farmers market.

Yes..It looks Like Juglans nigra

Thanks for the suggested id. Fruits do not look like Juglans nigra to me. Let’s wait for more expert comments.

Now a days I am not unable to  glance through the  mails. I  try  to reply mails sent by … only due to my involvement in some other project work which is taking most of the time. By chance I glanced through the summary today and this mail caught my eyes since it is from Bangalore. For me the tree  is Melia dubia.

Thanks a lot … for the id.

To me it looks like Melia azedarach.

No. It is not M.azedarach. I have seen innumerable  number of tree in Bangalore and Mysore. There are big farms here where they grow M.dubia. Most importantly the fruits are quite characteristic and quite different from M.azedarach.


Fast growing native trees : 5 posts by 3 authors.

what are the fast growing native big trees?

Esp replacement for Raintree.
shirish tree seems good but i heard its lifespan is 100 years only?

How is kadamb?

Melia dubia

Thank you very much … for a quick response.

How long does this tree lives?

I have no idea about the age.

This is a very fast growing tree used for plywood. There are many plantations near Mysore. One thing is clear: The tree / plant  that grows fast dies early.

‘Azadirachta indica’ syn. ‘Melia azadirachta’ is called ‘Nimbara’ ‘निंबारा’ in Marathi.
Date/Time- 01st March 2010, 11.40 a.m.
Location- Place, Altitude, GPS-  On the way from Tonrna Fort to Madheghat, Tahasil-Velhe, Dist. Pune, Maharashtra  तोरणा किल्‍ला ते मढेघाट या वाटेवर, ता.- वेल्‍हा, जि.- पुणे, महाराष्‍ट्र
Habitat- Garden/ Urban/ Wild/ Type- Wild
Plant Habit- Tree/ Shrub/ Climber/ Herb-  Tree

Not Azadirachta, …, the leaves are bipinnate

Could be Melia azedarach

Sorry, it is not Azadirachta indica. It is melia azedarach.

… to me the flowers and leaves of Melia azedarach look different from what … has posted.

The tree over all looks like Melia azadirachta ‘निम्बारा and not Azadirachta indica ‘कडुलिंब ‘
The close up of the flowers would have helped. The stamenal tube is Violet in the former where as it is white in case of latter. You can search my earlier images. The fruits here definitely look like Melia azadirachta and not  Azadirachta indica ( लिम्बोण्या)
Attaching my picture of Melia azadirachta

Attachments (1)

In “पु. ल. देशपांडे उद्यान” on Sinhagad road A lot of these trees have been planted on Western boundary

Melia azadirachta and Azadirachta indica are same, latter being the correct name now. The plant uploaded by you is clearly Melia azedarach with bipinnate leaves and more importantly mauve coloured flowers. Former is known as neem and latter Darek (Hindi), Mahanim or Gora neem. The plant uploaded by … seems to have bipinnate leaves and fruits which resemble Melia azedarach, but after I had second look at the plant, it has whitish flowers (like neem) but much more denser. It may turn out to be none of these two species. The margin of leaflets also suggests that.

… most probably Garuga pinnata

Nimbara is correct but it is Melia dubia (syn composita)

You seem to have found the correct identity. Leaves are clearly bipinnate and white flowers have a greenish tinge, so it can’t be Guruga pinnata.

This not Kadu nimb or bakana nimb The flowers are whitish and leaves are very light green.

Thanks … I was wondering about the colour of flower and leaf pattern. I have yet to see this plant. … a nice find.
Melia dubia has been labelled in FFOS as (कडू खजूर)
Melia azadirachta as बकाणा निंब

Thanks a lot …, I also thanks …

now I can say it ‘Melia dubia’ is called ‘Nimbara’ ‘निंबारा’ in Marathi.

Please throw light on Bakan the neem with try-pinnate dark green leaves. I have not seen it flowering. The propagation is by root shoot as in Akash neem / Indian cork tree.

Thanks … for correcting me. It is indeed Melia dubia, not Melia azadirach.

For many days I was wondering why you had said that Melia azadirachta and Azadirachta indica are same On Careful searching I understood my mistake.
Your sentence is absolutely correct.
The spelling of the other plant with Lilac staminal tube is in fact Melia azedarach L. and not Melia azadirachta which may be many of us were believing like me.

And if I am not wrong Azadirachta is originated from “Azad Darakht” आजाद दरख्त 

What does that दरख्त mean?

Darkht means Big tree in Urdu.

Yes … You are right about “Azad Darakht”. This is what our Chief Conservator of Forests in J & K had informed us 40 years back. But yes, a small modification Azad means free and not big. The plant grows freely, and would come up though self sowing and no plantation drives are needed. I hope you will agree.

Thanks …, I said Azad means free and Darakht means Big Tree (in Urdu). Are you aware of more examples like it?

I would convey when ever I would recollect any. Such things really make interactions interesting. Just to share one or two:
1. I was collecting in Gulmarg forest in Kashmir nearly 38 years back when a local came to me saying that there is a plant known as sarap (snake in kashmiri) buti (plant) under which snake lives and if you pluck that plant the snake would bite. He was taken aback when I opened my bag to show him several plants of Arisaema. And then I told him that it is known as sarap buti (Cobra plant) because the spathe resembles a cobra hood and not that snake lives under it.

2. Second time around same years I was collecting weeds of saffron fields, and had collected several plants of Iris reticulata (which grows only in saffron fields of Pampore in Kashmir, and also in persia) when the saffron grower started accusing me that I had stolen saffron from his field. I tried to convince him that it was not saffron (resemble saffron but flowers are much different and appear in March, whereas saffron flowers in October), but in vain, but it convinced me that this Iris which resembles saffron in leaves as well as the corm like bulbs, would have come with saffron from Persia, which is considered as secondary source of origin of Kashmir saffron. The saffron was originally introduced from France, but it is believed that all corms of saffron were eaten by local people during severe famine in Kashmir, and saffron now in Kashmir was later introduced from Persia. This episode with saffron grower earned me a publication on ”Origin of Kashmir saffron” supported by Iris reticulata and a few more weeds which grow in Persia and Saffron fields of Kashmir and not in Europe.

Thanks … for sharing valuable experience. I still dream to live such life and contribute to the science in this way. Thanks again.


Had procured a sapling of Melia dubia [now M.composita] locally called Nimbara, in 1997 from the Academy of Developmental Science, Kashele [now defunct] which specialised in the propagation of endemic forest trees.

   It is an extremely fast growing tree. A few years later considering it to be the exotic Persian Lilac / Melia azedarach [ though now known to be native to the sub-Himalayan & Shivalik tracts of India] had chopped it down.

   About 3 years later on checking the area was surprised to find that it had shot up again to its original size. Once again carried out a demolition exercise. This was about 7 years ago.

   Last Sunday, after my recent gaffe on this group, where I had mistakenly identified … photograph of M.azedarach as Azadirachta indica [Neem], decided to check on the plant again and was amazed to find that like the proverbial phoenix it had resurrected itself and is flourishing again.

   As am now aware that M.composita is found naturally in deciduous forests of the Sahyadris, have decided to let it grow.

   Sending a few photographs.


I appreciate your great work on maintaining the biodiversity profile at least in some private area which you possess.

Yes, this tree is fast growing and fast vaishing too. The wood being rather soft and light it falls prey to the stem borers easily and can not survive more than 20 years (after growing to full size) in the wild. Natural regeneration is fairly good. It is occasionally found on the eastern side of Sahyadris at an elevation of about 600-1000 mts. in deciduous forests

… on a lighter vein I was wondering what would your stand be if at all the world becomes visa less and passport less for travel for human beings ! ! Also I think  at present some non-indigenous birds must be coming and feasting on the fruits from your trees!

Thanks … For the record – my bird tally stands at 201 with a range extension for at least 3 species.


Melia azedarach : ……………………..

1) Neem – Pinnate leaf, Pale green flowers, Yellow oblong fruits, Juicy sweet bitter fruits, enjoyed by all birds and even children. Highly valued for medicinal property. Good quantity of oil in seeds. Grows as a huge tree
2) Bakana Neem – Bi-pinnate leaf, Round yellow hard fruits. No juice so useless for consumption by birds or human. Not much oil

3) Bakana – Tri-pinnate leaf dark grren , Never seen flowers or fruits, Propagation by shoots from roots like Indian cork tree. i have seen these trees in Virbha & in IIT Kharagpur.

This thread is turning out to be interesting.
Could the third plant mentioned by … turn out to be M. dubia Cav. (or if we believe useful plants of India Indian plant M. dubia Hiern. is different from M. dubia Cav. and correctly M. composita Willd.), a wild tree more useful as timber plant.

The plant can have tripinnate leaves and more importantly flowers are creamish white like neem. The plant seems to be growing in South West India. Could any member upload its photographs to complete the series.

Sir in Flora of Mah. by Dr. Almeida Vol I pg 227: Melia composita Willd. Sp. is described.
As mentioned in the volume the same was known as M. dubia Hiern in Hook.f., Fl. Brit. Ind. 1:545,1875 (non Cav.,1789); Talbot, Tress Bombay39, 1902; Woodrow in Journ. Bombay nat. Hist.Soc. 11: 269, 1897. 

The common names mentioned are Kadu-Khajur, Kala khajur, Maha-neem.
The description of Melia composita I quote ” A tall handsome tree. Young branches densely clothed with stellate pubescens, ultimately smooth. Leaves bi- sometimes tri-pinnate, 20-70 cm long; ultimate leaflets 5-11, oposite, 2-8 by 0.6- 4 cm ( the terminal the largest ), from ovate-lanceolate to ovate -rotund, acute or acuminate, entire or crenulate, thinly stellatelt pubescent on both surfaces when young, at length glabrous, base acute or rounded, more or less oblique; main nerves 7- 8 pairs, petioles 3-6 mm long. Flowers greenish white….. Drupes ovoid or ellipsoid, 2.5 – 4 cm long, smooth, yellowish. seed 1 in each cell, smooth, pointed.”
Further in distribution : ” Koina nagar (M.R.Almeida-1344, BLAT), Ratnagiri, Konkan( Graham), Malsiras in Purandhar Taluka (kanitkar), Parghat(Dalzell & Gibson), Raigad (V.D.Vartak), Saptashringi, Ranling.” 
I hope the above helps in getting the third tree pics.

If you have the flora, kindly copy the key here, so that other differentiating features (in addition to flower colour) are known

Yes Sir quoting flora details from Vol I : ” Flowers greenish white, 8 mm long, fragrant, in stellately pubescent, many- flowered branched panicles shorter than the leaves; peduncles long; pedicels short. Calyx stellately tomentose outside, deeply divided; lobes ovate, erect,ciliate. Petals 6 mm long, linear- spathulate, concave, pubescent outside, puberulous within, ciliate. Staminal tube scarcely 6 mm long, slightly expanded at the mouth, 10- toothed ( the teeth bifid), silky puberulous on both surfaces; anthers exserted,pubescent, longer than the teeth. Ovary glabrous 5-celled; style little longer than the staminal tube, overtopped by the apiculate anthers; stigma cylindric, 5- toothed; teeth erect.”

Nagla forest … part of Sanjay Gandhi National Park
Elevation range: sea level to about 600 ft asl … January 7, 2018
Please validate whether Melia dubia.

Thanks, … Pl. check if it helps:



ID request-15022012-PKA1: Seen this Large tree in Matheran-Prabalgad Valley.
Date/Time: 05-02-2012 / 09:30AM
Location: Matheran- Prabalgad Valley, Panvel region, Maharashtra
Habitat: Wild
Kindly help me to identify this one..

Is it Kakda? In marathi?

May be Melia sp

Agreed. This is Kakkad [Garuga pinnata].

I agree with … id: Garuga pinnata.

Garuga pinnata
Very unusual to find this fruiting in Feb. Actually it is the flowering time of this tree in Western ghats.
You remember we have seen this flowering in last Feb near Vasai.
Currently I could spot a lone tree on Mhatoba Tekdi which is flowering at present

Appears more close to Melia dubia rather than those at Garuga pinnata


Another tree seen in Lalbagh today (20.1.20)

This is very close to a tree posted earlier from Bangalore.

Melia dubia,

Yes. This is a common tree in Mysore & Bangalore. Check my earlier posting (long ago)

Fruit for Id – ID26082020SH1 : 4 posts by 3 authors. Attachments (2)

Fruit for Id pl. Which are these fruits on which Malabar Giant Squirrel is having a feast ?
Location – Wayanad (Kerala)

Date – November 2018

Looks like Melia dubia

I too agree with …


efi thread (In Flora of Mah. by Dr. Almeida Vol I pg 227: Melia composita Willd. Sp. is described.
As mentioned in the volume the same was known as M. dubia Hiern in Hook.f., Fl. Brit. Ind. 1:545,1875 (non Cav.,1789); Talbot, Tress Bombay39, 1902; Woodrow in Journ. Bombay nat. Hist.Soc. 11: 269, 1897)
(if we believe useful plants of India Indian plant M. dubia Hiern. is different from M. dubia Cav. and correctly M. composita Willd.))

The Plant List Ver. 1.1 (Melia dubia Cav. is a synonym of Melia azedarach L.) The Plant List Ver. 1.1 (Melia composita Benth. is a synonym of Melia azedarach L.) GRIN (no link)  

Annotated checklist of Flowering plants of Nepal (Melia dubia Cav.)  

MMPND (Melia azedarach L. syn. Melia dubia Cav. ex M.Roem., Melia composita Willd.)  

India Biodiversity Portal (Melia dubia Cav. syn. Melia composita Willd.) Wikipedia  

Biotik (Melia dubia Cav. syn. Melia composita Willd.)

Forest Plants of Eastern India By Amal Bhusan Chaudhuri (1988- Melia dubia Cav. syn. Melia composita Willd.)

Flora of Eastern Ghats: Hill Ranges of South East India, Volume 1 By T. Pullaiah, D. Muralidhara Rao, K. Sri Ramamurthy
(2006- Description & Keys- Melia azedarach & Melia dubia Cav.)

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