Friday, December 5, 2008

Butea monosperma (LAM.) TAUB.

Family : Fabaceae

Synonym(s) : Butea frondosa Koenig ex Roxb; Erythrina monosperma Lamk

English Name : Flame of the Forest, Silk Cotton and Butea Gum Tree

Origin : India


It is an erect, medium sized tree of 12 to 15 m high, with a crooked trunk and irregular branches. The shoots are clothed with gray or brown silky pubescence. The bark is ash coloured. The leaves 3 foliate, large and stipulate. Petiole is 10 to 15 cm long. Leaflets are obtuse, glabrous above, finely silky and conspicuously reticulately veined beneath with cunnate or deltoid base. From January to March the plant is bald. Flowers in rigid racemes of 15 cm long, densely brown velVety on bare branches. Calyx is dark, olive green to brown in colour and densely velvety outside. The corolla is long with silky silvery hairs outside and bright orange red. Stamens are diadelphes, anthers uniform. Ovary 2 ovule, style filiform, curved and stigma capitate. Pods argenteo-canesent, narrowed, thickened at the sutures, splitting round the single apical seed, lowest part indehiscent. The seeds are flat, reniform, curved.


Tropical jungles and forests (according to Chandel et al.) of India; up to 4.000 ft in the northwest Himalayan region (Bentley and Trimen); also in Burma, Ceylon and Java.

Parts Used : Gum (from bark), bark, flower, seed and leaf

Herb Effects

Antifertility (flower and seed); anthelmintic and laxative (seed); astringent (gum); stops secretions and hemostatic, bitter, pungent, emmenagogue, alliterative,tonic, diuretic, aphrodisiac.

Active Ingredients

Leucocyanidin and its tetramer, procyanidin, a mucilaginous substance, gallic acid and tannic acid (which yields pyrocatechin) (gum), a fixed oil, palasonin, alpha-amyrin, beta-sitosterol, a resin and albuminoid (seed), palastrin, butin and butrin (flower).

Medicinal Use

For dysentery, diarrhea, phthisis and bleeding within the bladder and stomach (gum); as a laxative (seed); in hemorrhoids and boils (leaf); as an anthelmintic, specially useful in the treatment of roundworms and tapeworms (seed oil); diabetes, gallbladder stone, sore throat and leucorrhea.


For gall-bladder stone: Soak the flower in half cup of water overnight. Take this orange-red lime water for continuous five days in empty stomach dissolve gall-bladder stone in human beings.




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