Flower Blossoms

Botanical Description & Life Cycle

Pongam Tree BranchLeaf

Photo by LiChieh Pan
The 2 to 4 in. long leaves alternate.  Their pinnate shape gives rise to their species name pinnata.  The leaves are evergreen and occur in fives, sevens, or nines.
Pongam flowers range from white to pink to purple.  They are seen most often in groups of 2, 3.  The pea shaped blossoms are 15 to 18mm long. Flowering PongamiaFlower

Photo by Forest & Kim Starr

Photo by Dinesh
Pongam pods are hard, brown, and smooth.  They grow to be between 3 and 6 cm long and between 2 and 3 cm wide.
These seeds range from 10 to 15 cm long.  They range from light to dark brown in color and have a bean-like shape. Seed

Image by Trees ForTheFuture
Root Pongamia possess one long, thick taproot with many well developed lateral roots.  their roots harbor nitrogen fixing cyanobacteria.
Pongam tree bark is thin with an outer gray or gray, brown color and an inner yellow color.  These trees reach anywhere from 30 to 75 ft. tall, but the trunk is typically short.  It can grow to be more than 10 ft. around. Tree Trunk

Image by Joel Abroad

Life Cycle

Flowers, Leaves, & Seedpods
Image taken by Tatters :)
The Pongam tree exhibits an odd growth pattern compared to many other trees.  Generally, new leaf is produced from May to the end of August and are not lost until April of the following year.  Fruit production occurs throughout December; then, in February its seeds begin to ripen and will do so through May.  In March, the pods join the seeds in the ripening process and will finish ripening at the end of May.  The Pongam tree flowers from April until the end of June.

Move on to read about Pongamia pinnata's
interactions with other organisms.

Go back to the Homepage.