What is Haritaki?
Terminalia chebula (Yellow Myrobalan or Chebulic Myrobalan; Sinhala: අරළු (Aralu), Tamil:கடுக்காய்(Kadukkai);മലയാളം [ "കടുക്ക" ] Assamese: Xilikha; Urdu: ; Chinese: 诃子 he zi; Gujarati: Himmej; Telugu: Karakkaya; Sanskrit: harītakī, हरीतकी; Bengali: হরিতকী horītokī; Tibetan: A-ru-ra) is a species of Terminalia, native to southern Asia from India and Nepal east to southwestern China (Yunnan), and south to Sri Lanka, Malaysia and Vietnam.
It is a deciduous tree growing to 30m tall, with a trunk up to 1m in diameter. The leaves are alternate to subopposite in arrangement, oval, 7 - 8cm long and 4.5 - 10cm broad with a 1 - 3cm petiole. The fruit is drupe-like, 2 - 4.5cm long and 1.2 - 2.5cm broad, blackish, with five longitudinal ridges.
There are many varieties such as:
- Terminalia chebula var. chebula. Leaves and shoots hairless, or only hairy when very young.
- Terminalia chebula var. tomentella (Kurz) C.B.Clarke. Leaves and shoots silvery to orange hairy.