Nees & Eberm.
Family : Lauraceae
Other names : Indian cassia
Cinnamomum tamala is a moderate
sized evergreen trees which is the source of tejpat leaves and the
Indian cassia bark. It is distributed in tropical and sub-tropical
Himalayas, Khasi and Jaintia hills and in Eastern Bengal.
Plants are raised from seeds sown
in nursery beds in March-April. Seedlings are transplanted to the
field in rows of 2m apart with a spacing of 3 – 3.5 m between plants.
Leaves are collected in dry weather every year from vigourous plants,
dried in the sun and tied up into bundles for marketing.
The principal components of the essential
oil obtained from leaves are d-a-phellandrene and eugenol. The essential
oil from the bark contains 70 - 85 % cinnamic aldehyde.
The leaves are used as a spice in
Indian cooking and they occupy the place of bay leaves in Europe.
Medicinal and other use
In Kashmir, they are used as a substitute
for pan or betel leaves. It is also used as a clarifier in dyeing.