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Derris Indica
 
 

Derris indica, also known as Pongamia pinnata is a legume tree with sees containing oils and fatty acids suitable for biodiesel production. It is a fast-growing evergreen tree which reaches 40 feet in height and spread, forming a broad, spreading canopy casting moderate shade. The three-inch-long, pinnately compound, glossy green leaves are briefly deciduous, dropping for just a short period of time in early spring but being quickly replaced by new growth. Small clusters of white, purple, and pink flowers blossom on their branches throughout the year, maturing into brown seed pods. The tree is well suited to intense heat and sunlight and its dense network of lateral roots and its thick, long taproot make it drought tolerant. The dense shade it provides slows the evaporation of surface water and its root structures promote nitrogen fixation, which moves nutrients from the air into the soil. Withstanding temperatures slightly below 0C to 50C and annual rainfall of 525 dm, the tree grows wild on sandy and rocky soils. Although all parts of the plant are toxic and will induce nausea and vomiting if eaten, the fruits and sprouts, along with the seeds, are used in many traditional remedies. Juices from the plant, as well as the oil, are antiseptic and resistant to pests.

Derris indicais is one of the few nitrogen fixing trees (NFTS) to produce seeds containing 30- 42% oil. The seed oil is an important asset of this tree having been used as lamp oil, in soap making, and as a lubricant for thousands of years. It is often planted as an ornamental and shade tree but CJP has honor to establish this untapped resource as alternative source for Bio- Diesel industry of future.

The Derris Indica trees must be regarded as a sure source of 2nd Generation Biodiesel and the foundation around which a profitable Business plan can be built for its ability to provide large amount of oil and its pure hardiness and stress handling ability. The D.Indica is tree that has enough credentials: a higher recovery and quality of oil than other crops, no direct competition with food crops as it is a non-edible source of fuel, and no direct competition with existing farmland as it can be grown on degraded and marginal land. As a legume it is also able to fix its own nitrogen from the soil, minimizing the need for added fertilizers.

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