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Henna or Hina (Lawsonia inermis, syn. L. alba) is a flowering plant, the sole species in the genus Lawsonia in the family Lythraceae. It is native to tropical and subtropical regions of Africa, southern Asia, and northern Australasia in semi-arid zones. Henna is a tall shrub or small tree, 2–6 m high. It is glabrous, multibranched with spine tipped branchlets. Leaves are opposite, entire, glabrous, sub-sessile, elliptical, and broadly lanceolate (1.5–5.0 cm x 0.5–2 cm), acuminate, having depressed veins on the dorsal surface. During the onset of precipitation intervals, the plant grows rapidly; putting out new shoots, then growth slows. The leaves gradually yellow and fall during prolonged dry or cool intervals. Henna flowers have four sepals and a 2 mm calyx tube with 3 mm spread lobes. Petals are obvate, white or red stamens inserted in pairs on the rim of the calyx tube. Ovary is four celled, style up to 5 mm long and erect. Fruits are small, brownish capsules, 4–8 mm in diameter, with 32–49 seeds per fruit, and open irregularly into four splits. Lawsone content in leaves is negatively associated with the number of seeds in the fruits.
Henna is commercially cultivated in western India, Pakistan, Morocco, Yemen, Iran, Afghanistan, Somalia, Sudan, Libya, Egypt, and Bangladesh. Presently the Pali district of Rajasthan is the most heavily cultivated henna production area in India, with over 100 henna processors operating in Sojat City.
Though henna has been used for body art and hair dye since the Bronze Age, henna has had a recent renaissance in body art due to improvements in cultivation, processing, and the diasporas of people from traditional henna using regions. 
The word "henna" comes from the Arabic name for Lawsonia inermis, pronounced /ħinnaːʔ/ or colloquially /ħinna/.In the Indian subcontinent, there are many variant words such as Mehndi in North India, Pakistan and Bangladesh. In Telugu (India, Malaysia, USA), it is known as Gorintaaku. In Tamil (South India, Singapore, Malaysia, Sri Lanka) it is called "Marudhaani" and is used as ground fresh leaves rather than as dried powder. It is used in various festivals and celebrations. The paste is left on the skin from a few hours to overnight and the stain can last a few days to a month depending on the quality of the paste, individual skin type and how long the paste is allowed to stay on the skin.