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Murraya koenigii (L.) Spreng.

Family Name: Rutaceae
Common Name: Curry Leaf Tree, Daun Kari, Indian Curry Tree, Curry Bush, Karapincha, Karwa Pale, Garupillai, Kerupulai, 咖哩叶, 调料九里香, 麻绞叶
Full Sun: 6-8h Moderate Water Caterpillar Food Plant Herb & Spice Fragrant Woody


Family Name
Genus Epithet
Species Epithet
Name Authority
Name Status (botanical)
Common Names

Classifications and Characteristics

Plant Division Angiosperms (Flowering Seed Plants) (Dicotyledon)
Plant Growth Form Shrub (Woody)
Lifespan (in Singapore) Perennial
Mode of Nutrition Autotrophic
Plant Shape Shrubby
Maximum Height 2.5 m


Native Distribution India to Indochina
Native Habitat Terrestrial
Preferred Climate Zone Tropical
Local Conservation Status Exotic

Description and Ethnobotany

Growth Form Shrub up to 2.5 m tall.
Foliage Compound, odd-pinnate 30 cm-long leaves are composed of 11-21 shiny, dark green, lance-shaped leaflets (4.9 cm long, 1.8 cm wide). Leaflet apex emarginate and base oblique, margin slightly toothed. The leaflet are attached to the rachis (leaf stalk forming the main axis of the leaf) by a 0.5 cm-long, reddish petiole in alternate to sub-opposite arrangement (leaflets single and alternating to almost paired). Leaves are highly aromatic when rubbed or crushed.
Stems Stems are dark green to brown, with numerous dots. 
Flowers White, funnel-shaped, 5-lobed flowers have a sweet fragrance (1.1 cm wide). Flowers are arranged in clusters (called as cyme) at the terminal. 
Fruits Black, glossy fruits are round to oblong (1.4-1.6 cm long, 1-1.2 cm wide). Each fruit contains a single, dark green seed (11 mm long, 8 mm wide) which takes up half the volume of the fruit. The pulp is edible, rich in Vitamin C and tastes sweet.
Habitat Found in moist forests, evergreen and deciduous forests. 
Cultivation Plant can be propagated by seed. Sow seeds immediately after harvesting (seeds are viable up to 3 weeks). 
Etymology Genus Murraya is named in honor of Johan Andreas Murray (1740 - 1791), Professor of Botany at Gottingen. Species koenigii is named in honor of Johann Gerhad Konig (Koenig) (1728 - 1785), who was a missionary and botanist in India.
Ethnobotanical Uses Edible Plant Parts (Edible Leaves)
Food (Herb and Spice : The leaves are used to flavor and enhance aroma in Indian curries.)
Medicinal ( The essential oil found in the leaves and seeds have antibacterial and anti-fungal activity.)

Landscaping Features

Desirable Plant Features Fragrant (Foliage)
Plant & Rootzone Preference - Tolerance Well-Drained Soils
Landscape Uses Parks & Gardens, Small Gardens, Container Planting

Fauna, Pollination and Dispersal

Fauna Pollination Dispersal Associated Fauna Caterpillar Food Plant

Plant Care and Propagation

Light Preference Full Sun
Water Preference Moderate Water
Propagation Method Seed


Foliage Retention Evergreen
Mature Foliage Colour(s) Green
Mature Foliage Texture(s) Smooth
Prominent Young Flush Colour(s) Green
Young Flush Texture(s) Smooth
Foliar Type Compound
Foliar Arrangement Along Stem Alternate, Spiral
Foliar Attachment to Stem Petiolate
Foliar Shape(s) Non-Palm Foliage
Foliar Venation Pinnate / Net
Foliar Margin Serrate / Toothed
Foliar Apex - Tip Emarginate
Foliar Base Oblique / Asymmetrical
Leaf Area Index (LAI) for Green Plot Ratio 4.5 (Shrub & Groundcover - Dicot)

Floral (Angiosperm)

Flower & Plant Sexuality 1 Bisexual Flowers
Flower Colour(s) White
Flower Texture(s) Smooth
Flower Grouping Cluster / Inflorescence
Flower Location Terminal
Flower Symmetry Radial
Individual Flower Shape Funnelform / Funnel-shaped
Inflorescence Type Cyme
Flowering Period Free-Flowering

Fruit, Seed and Spore

Mature Fruit Colour(s) - Angiosperms and Gymnosperms Red, Black
Fruit Classification Simple Fruit
Fruit Type 1 Fleshy Fruit
Seed Quantity Per Fruit Few (1-5)

Image Repository



Master ID 944
Species ID 2238
Flora Disclaimer The information in this website has been compiled from reliable sources, such as reference works on medicinal plants. It is not a substitute for medical advice or treatment and NParks does not purport to provide any medical advice. Readers should always consult his/her physician before using or consuming a plant for medicinal purposes.
Species record last updated on: 20 April 2020.