Description: Bignay is a shrub or small tree, 3 to 12 meters (10 to 40 feet) tall, with shiny, pointed leaves about 15 centimeters (6 inches) long. Its flowers are small, clustered, and green. It has fleshy, dark red or black fruit and a single seed. The fruit is about 1 centimeter (1/2 inch) in diameter.
Habitat and Distribution: This plant is found in rain forests and semievergreen seasonal forests in the tropics. It is found in open places and in secondary forests. It grows wild from the Himalayas to Sri Lanka and eastward through Indonesia to northern Australia. However, it may be found anywhere in the tropics in cultivated forms.
Edible Parts: The fruit is edible raw. Do not eat any other parts of the tree. In Africa, the roots are toxic. Other parts of the plant may be poisonous.
Eaten in large quantities, the fruit may have a laxative effect.
All text and images from the U.S. Army Field Manual 3-05.70: Survival.
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