A tree of dhaman
Dhaman is a plant of India. It is found in the sub-Himalayan tract extending from Jammu and Kashmir to Assam. It also grows in some other parts of India. It bears tasty edible fruits. But the main use of this plant is fodder and fibre. So the fruit is just a bye product.
A moderate sized large tree, 10-12 m high, bark pale brown; young arts densely pubescent; leaves 8-12 x 5-8 cm, ovate acuminate with a tendency to become lobate at the apex, crenate dentate, upper surface, upper surface minutely stellately hoary or subglabrous, nerves pubescent, lower surface hoary tomentose, cordate and inequilateral at the base, 6-nerved, 3-nerves at the larger and two at the smaller side of the midrib.
Flowers small, umbellate; sepals 8 mm long, oblong, sub acute, pubescent outside, glabrous within; petals about half as long as sepals, oblong or spathulate, entire or notched; ovary villous, style longer than stamens, sigma somewhat irregularly five lobed.
Flower of dhaman
Fruits a drupe, of the size of a pea, black, globose or 2-(rarely 4)lobed.
Seeds 1-2 celled.
The fruits are edible and taste good. These are, however, seedy and do not contain much pulp.
Unripe fruits of dhaman
Wood is strong, elastic and durable and is used for shafts, poles, frames, panels, masts, oars, tool handles and agricultural implements. As the wood is ornamental, so it is also suitable for furniture. It is also used for making golf shafts, billiard cue shafts and cricket stumps.
The bark yields a fibre which is used for cordage.
Leaves and twigs are lopped for fodder.
Dhaman is propagated from seed which germinate easily. This is a very useful multipurpose tree and therefore should be included in various tree planting programmes.