Botanical Name: Euphorbia Hirta
Synonym: Euphorbia pilulifera.
Common Names: Cats hair, asthma weed, basri dudhi, chara, malnommee, pill – bearing spurge, patikan kerbau, patikan kebo, fei yang cao, gelang susu, amampat chaiarisi, erva de santa luzia, fei-yang ts’ao, Dugudhika, snakeweed.
English: pill-bearing spurge, asthma plant, hairy spurge, garden spurge, pillpod sandman [
Bengali: boro-keruie, barokhervi
Hawaiian: Koko kahiki
Hindi: baridhudi, dudh ghas, dudhi
Sanskrit: chara, amampatchairasi, barokheruie
Tagalog: tawa-tawa, gatas-gatas
Twi: Kaka wie adwie
Telugu: reddivari nanabalu, reddinananbrolu, bidarie
Urdu: lal dodhak
Habitat: Euphorbia Hirta is native to India. It is a hairy herb that grows in open grasslands, roadsides and pathways.
Euphorbia Hirta is an erect or prostrate annual herb which can get up to 60 cm long with a solid, hairy stem that produced an abundant white latex. There are stipules present. The leaves are simple, elliptical, hairy (on both upper and lower surfaces but particularly on the veins on the lower leaf surface), with a finely dentate margin. Leaves occur in opposite pairs on the stem. The flowers are unisexual and found in axillary cymes at each leaf node. They lack petals and are generally on a stalk. The fruit is a capsules with three valves and produces tiny, oblong, four-sided red seeds. It has a white or brown taproot.
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Prefers a light well-drained moderately rich loam in an open sunny position. The plant is not very tolerant of frost, though it can probably be grown successfully in this country as a spring-sown annual. Hybridizes with other members of this genus. The ripe seed is released explosively from the seed capsules. Members of this genus are rarely if ever troubled by browsing deer or rabbits. This genus has been singled out as a potential source of latex (for making rubber) for the temperate zone, although no individual species has been singled out.
Seed – sow mid to late spring in situ. It might be best to sow the seed in a cool greenhouse in early March and plant out the seedlings in late May, this will give the plants longer to grow and mature.
CONTAINS: Glycoside, alkaloids, sterols, tannins, phorbic acid. Camphol, leucocyanidol, quercitol, quercitrin and a quercitol derivative containing rhamnose and a chlorophenolic acid. Though reported to contain HCN, the plants have been generally negative cyanogenetic in testing. The irritating latex contains euphorbon.
The dry herb yields gallic acid, a phenol-like substance, an alcohol euphosterol and a trace of alkaloid (upto 2% xanthorhamnin).
Whole herb yields taraxerol and taraxerone. Also: resin, calcium, wax, calcium malate, lignin, basorin, volatile oil.
Most spurges contain diterpene esters which are carcinogenic, highly irritant and purgative. E. hirta, however, is ester-free and considered a safe remedy in Traditonal Chinese Medicine (TCM). This plant was listed in the NF 1916-47 as having some reputation as an anti-asthmatic.
An annual plant which is common to all tropical countries. Slender, hairy stem and lanceolate opposite toothed leaves; small yellow flowers that occur in dense clusters in the leaf axils, producing small reddish wrinkled seeds; the plant produces a milk latex which is irritating to mucous membranes.
It has lactogenic properties.
Used against asthma, bronchitis, worm infestation, conjunctivitis and dysentery. The latex of the plant is used for warts and cuts. It also has lactogenic properties.
NB: A test done in China using a 20% preparation of the neutral saponins from this herb were injected intramuscularly for the treatment of cancer of the esophagus. More than half of the 64 patients studied either were completely cured or markedly improved. Results whose esophageal tumors remained unreduced in size were able to swallow food more easily. It is believed that the tumors may have been softened by the saponins in the herb.
Acrid, bitter, cool, slightly toxic, antiseptic that expels phlegm and relieves spasms; extracts are spasmolytic and antihistaminic. Also, anti-inflammatory. Affects colon, spleen, lung, large intestine.
Specific in Traditional Chinese Medicine for destroying the organism which causes amoebic dysentery.
Decoction has been used for asthmatic conditions, chronic bronchitis, and emphysema; the tincture is used in coryza and hay fever.
Has been used internally for asthma, bronchitis, emphysema, nervous cough (for relaxing the larynx), excess mucous, hay fever, and amoebic dysentery; combined with Grindelia camporum (gumplant) for asthma and bronchitis.
Juice has been used externally for warts; whole plant is used externally for burns.
Has been used in Chinese medicine: the stem is utilized for asthma and bronchitis; whole plant is decocted for athlete’s foot, dysentery, enteritis, fever, gas, itch and skin conditions.
Other medical disciplines regard it as anodyne, depuritive, diuretic, lactagogue, purgative and vermifuge. It is used for asthma, bronchitis, calculus, colic, cough, dysentery, dyspnea, eruptions, excrescences, eyelids, fever, flu, fractures, gonorrhea, headache, hypertension, itch, measles, nausea, opthalmia, skin ailments, sores, splinters, stomach ache, tumors, urogenital ailments, warts and wounds.
DOSE = TRADITIONAL DOSAGES FOR PROFESSIONAL NOTE ONLY
!All others buy commercial preparations and follow directions carefully!
DRIED HERB = 0.1 to 1/3 gram 3 times per day
INFUSION = 1 cup boiling water over 1/2 to 1 tsp dried leaves and steeped for 10 to 15 minutes; taken 3 times daily.
DECOCTION = Please note, decoction is made in a 1 to 40 ratio and taken 1 Tbsp at a time.
FLUID EXTRACT = 1/2 to 1 drachm
TINCTURE = 1 to 2 ml taken 3 times daily.
Used for Humid asthma, cardiac dyspnea, hay fever, bronchitis, urethritis with intense pain on urinating and with much urging. Acrid leucorrhea. Hemorrhages from sunstroke and traumatism.
DOSE is 3rd to 6th potency.
The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplements, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.