Synonyms: Bombax pentandrum L., Ceiba caribaea (DC.) A. Chev., Ceiba casearia Medik. Eriodendron anfractuosum DC.
Family: Bombacaceae - Kapok-tree family
Growth Habit: Tree
Bangla/Vernacular Name: Shet Simul, Kapok; Sirmai Tula, Burma Simul (Chittagong-Cox's Bazar).
Tribal Name: Bely-plow (Khumi).
English Name: White silk cotton tree, Kapok, True Kapok tree.
A medium-sized, deciduous tree; branches horizontal, in whorls of three. Leaves long petioled, leaflets 5-8, lanceolate. Flowers dirty white, appears at the ends of the branches in clusters of 2-8. Capsules fusiform.
The plant yields a gum, which contains phenolic substances. It also contains linarin (acacetin 7-rutinoside) and water-soluble antigen. Seeds contain a fixed oil rich in palmitic, oleic and linoleic acids (Ghani, 2003).
Decoction or infusion of the flowers is given as a laxative. The oil from the seeds is used as an emollient. Cotton is used for pillow and blanket (Khumi).
Planted mainly in Cox's Bazar, Chittagong Hill Tracts and Chittagong; sporadically elsewhere.