Friday, December 5, 2008

Datura metel Linn.

Family : Solanaceae

Synonym(s) : Datura fastuosa (L.), Datura alba (Nees.)

English Name : Downy Datura or Dhatura

Origin : Tropical and Subtropical regions of Asia and Africa


It is a spreading herb sometimes remain shrubby. Leaves are ovate-lanceolate or broadly ovate, acute or acuminate, unequal at the base and often cordate, entire or dentate, sub-glabrous or with greyish tomentum, generally glandular in a long petiole of up to 10 cm in length. Flowers often double or triple. Calyx is inflated towards the middle, persistent and reflexes in fruit. Corolla is about twice as long as the calyx, white or tinged with green, pubescent outside and with the 10 toothed limb. Capsule is globose, tuberculate or muricate, borne on a short thick peduncle, which, unlike that of D. stramonium, is never erect but nodding. It dehisces irregularly exposing a mass of closely packed, light brown, flat seeds which nearly fill the interior.


Along roadsides and in wastelands in India.

Parts Used : Leaf, fruit, flower, seed and plant

Herb Effects

Anaesthetic, anodyne, antiasthmatic, antispasmodic, antitussive, bronchodilator, hallucinogenic, hypnotic and mydriatic (plant,seed,leaves); alleviates spasms and stimulates the cardiovascular system (fruit and plant); anthelmintic, anticancer, antiseptic, sedative and narcotic (plant); antiinflammatory and analgesic.

Active Ingredients

Ferredoxin, datumetelin, daturilin, withametelin B, secowithametelin, a hexacyclic withanolide, physalinliconol, datumetixone, 12-deoxy withastramonolide and a P-methoxybenzoyl ester of tropine (leaf); daturadiol and daturaolone (fruit); scopolamine.

Medicinal Use

Ophthalmia (seed decoction); asthma (flower); swolen areas and in rheumatism (leaf); to treat fever, worms, cracks in feet, filaria, chronic coryza, rabies, alopecia, skin diseases, boils, pain in breast and insanity (root, fruit and leaves); in the treatment of epilepsy, hysteria, insanity, heart diseases, fever with catarrh, diarrhoea, skin diseases and asthma (plant).


Hot, dry, and flushed skin, hallucinations, pupil dilation, headache, delirium, rapid and weak pulse, convulsions, and coma.


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