Castanospermum australe, or Moreton Bay Chestnut, a tall evergreen tree with dense foliage, attain a height of 18mt., is native to Australia, and is cultivated usually as a shade tree in various parts of India and Sri Lanka. The shiny, green, pinnate leaves form a dense crown, and are approximately 12 cm long. Castanospermum australe flowers measure around 3-4 cm in length, and are pea-shaped, bright red or yellow in color, with long white stamens. It bears pods 8-9 inches long, containing brown, round seeds, which though astringent, are edible after roasting. Seeds are 3-4.5cm wide and carried in pods. One pod contains 3-5 seeds. The seed is reported to have a compound, castanospermine that are under investigationas HIV inhibitor. The seed pods are astringent. Roasted seeds have the flavor or chestnuts. Castanospermum australe seeds are rich in starch, which is extracted in New South Wales on a commercial scale. The unripe seeds are poisonous to cattle, causing intense Gastroenteritis, while ripe ones are harmless. The leaves are also reported to be poisonous to livestock. The presence of a saponin in the leaves has been reported. Castanospermum australe has been reported to be useful in the treatment of cancer, but further research is required. It prefers peat-loamy soil. its seeds are poisonous if ingested. Please contact us for a wholesale price.