Scientific name: Caesalpinia sappan Linn. Name in different languages:- English: Brazil wood, Japan wood, Sappan wood. Sanskrit: Lohita, Patanga, Ranjana, Patranga, uchandana. Hindi: Bakam, Patamg. Tamil: Patangam. Kannada: Chekke Sappanga. Malayalam: Pathimugam.
Brazil wood (pathimukham) is botanically known as Caesalpinia sappan Linn that belongs to the plant family caesalpinioidae. In English pathimukham is also known as Sappan wood. Brazil wood (pathimukham) is a tree that grows up to 10 meters high and its leaves are 30 cm long. The branches of Brazil wood (pathimukham) have thorns in it and the flowers are seen at the tip .The flowers of pathimukham are very beautiful. The flowers have reddish yellow color inside. The fruits grow up to 10 cm long. In one fruit at least 4 seeds will be seen.The seeds of pathimukham can be collected for germination in the month of December. pathimukham is added while boiling water, as it has the ability to cool the body and quenches thirst as well. This is also used as cure for skin diseases, loose motion, and chest congestion.
Brazil wood (pathimukham) can be grown in any type of soil which has enough moisture. This can be cultivated as an inter- crop also and is highly resistant against pest infestations. In the month of December the Brazil wood (pathimukham) fruits start turning brown color and then they are plucked. The fruits are wrapped in a cloth and kept in baskets filled with sand and kept in sunlight for 6 days, and the seeds are separated. These seeds are kept open in a shade in an airy place and taken for germination. Soak the pathimukham seeds for at least 12 hours and wrap in cloth. When seeds start to germinate, they are removed and planted in polythene covers filled with soil and dried cow dung. The holes to plant seeds must be 3 cm deep. The soil should be kept moist always and such covers are kept in shade and when the sapling attains 4 leaf growth, they can be replanted in fences.
While planting the saplings of Brazil wood (pathimukham), the pit should be 50 cm deep. Fill the pit with top soil and powdered cow dung. Heap the soil mixture 20 cm high above the pit and plant the sapling after removing the polythene cover. While planting Brazil wood (pathimukham), a distance of at least 4 meters must be kept from the other trees in the compound. Avoid water logging in the area and otherwise the plant grows without any problem. The main part of Brazil wood (pathimukham) used as medicine is its bark. When the tree attains 7 years it can be cut and the bark is collected.