Sunday, February 15, 2009

Ficus religiosaLinn.

English Name : Bot-Tree, bo-tree, peepul, pipal, pipul, sacred fig.

Family : Moraceae

Origin : India to southeast Asia

It is a large medium-sized deciduous tree with spreading branches about 10 to 12 m high. Bark is grey with brownish specks, smooth and 1.3 cm thick. Trunks are irregularly shaped. Leaves are alternate, broadly ovate or rotund, caudate and somewhat pendulous, upper surface glaucous, 5 to 7 veined and long petioled. Male flowers are very few and sessile: sepals 3, stamen 1 and filament short. Female and gall flowers: sepals 5, style short and lateral. Fruits are sessile in axillary pairs, depressed-globose, 1.3 cm across and dark purple when ripe.

Found in uplands and plane areas and grows up to about 1650 metres or 5000 ft in the mountainous areas. Forests of subHimalayas. southern and central India and West Bengal; also in Garhwal (Himalayas).

Parts Used : Fruits, seeds, leaves and bark

Herb Effects
Astringent, antiviral, anthelmintic, lowers blood sugar and antiprotozoal (bark).

Active Ingredients
Beta-sitosterol and its glucosides (bark).

Medicinal Use
For skin diseases (leaf), dysentery, diarrhea and gonorrhea (bark decoction); in heart arrhythmia and sexual disorders, such as spermatorrhea and premature ejaculation, as an astringent (bark),in anal fistula, ulcer and wounds as an absorbent in inflammatory swellings (dried bark),for inflammatory ulcers (tender fresh leaves),in stomach ache and constipation (ripe fruits). The aerial roots are chewed by women to induce conception.

First potency (Homeopathic medicine).
20 to 60 grains of the powdered bark with honey.
Decoction: 20 to 60 grains of the powdered bark boiled with 2 ounces of water reduced to half an ounce and given with honey.
As a Vaginal douche: 1 dram to 1 ounce of the bark is boiled with 40 to 80 ounces of water for an hour or so, so that a pink solution is formed. Filter and give as a Vaginal douche either alone or mixed with honey, Salt, Alum, or Borax, one teaspoonful to a tint. For an Enema or for washing wounds the same decoction may be used.


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