Scientific name: Artocarpus heterophyllus
Bangla/Local name: ‘Kathal’
Taxonomic Position According to Cronquist (1988)
Species: A. heterophyllus
Identifying characteristics of the family
- Big tree
- Latex present, especially in the secondary phloem
- Monoecious or dioecious plant
- Infloresence spadix with bract spathe
- Compound fruit known as sorosis
General information and distribution
The family has 53 genera and around 1400 species of which mostly are tropical and sub-tropical.
Habit: Mostly perennial tree, few are shrub, ever green. But grafted tree is smaller than tree produced from seed. Latex is present in the tissue system
Root: Tap root system
Stem: The jackfruit is an erect, evergreen tree that grows up to 30 m high and 80-200 cm in diameter. The bark is rough to somewhat scaly, dark grey to greyish brown in colour.
Leaf: Simple, alternate, young jackfruit leaves are lobed but they become entire when mature. The leaves are dark green and shiny in adaxial side but light green in abaxial side. The leaves are elliptical-obovate in shape and measure about 20 cm long.
Inflorescence: Spadix having the bract known as spathe.
Flower: Small, unisexual, flowers grow from the trunk on short stalks. The male flowers are located higher on the tree above the female flowers. Female flowers are larger than male flower and hang from thick, short stalks on mature wood. Flowers are hypogynous.
Perianth: Tepal four, united or free often persistent with fruit.
Androecium: Stamens four or equal to the number of tepal.
Gynoecium: There are two carpels syncarpous.
Fruit: The jackfruit is a multiple fruit that is composed of the coherence of multiple flowers. The fruit hangs from thick stalks on the trunk and main branches. The jackfruit is the largest fruit in the world; weighing from 4-40 kg.
Important plants of this family
Most of the members of this family produce fruit, timber and used as ornamental purposes. The most common members are summarized as follows:
Table 1. Economically Important plant species of Moraceae family
|Bangla name||English name||Scientific name||Uses
|Not known||Breadfruit||A. altilis||Fruit|
|Chapalis||Not known||A.chaplasha Roxb.||Timber|
|Dumur||Common fig||F. carica||Fruit/timber|
|Rubber Gachh||Indian rubber tree||F. elastica||Ornamental|
|Gulang Dumur||Peepul||F. religiosa||Timber, ornamental|
Table 2. Jack fruit variety developed by Bangladesh Agricultural University, Mymensingh, Bangladesh
|Sl.No.||Name of variety||Developed by||Year of Release||Growing season||Yield
|BARI Kathal-1||BARI||2009||May-August||11800 fruits/ha|
Fruit is edible, trunk is used as furniture. Used as Vegetable: When fruit is young, the pulp is used to cook as vegetable. When fruit is ripe, it can be eaten fresh or made into various delicacies, chutney, jam, jelly and paste. It can also be preserved as candies, by mixing with sugar, honey, or syrup.
Timber & Products classified as medium hardwood, resistant to termite attack, fungal and bacterial decay, the timber is considered superior to teak, though not as hard as teak, for furniture, construction.