Categories
Herbs & Plants

Mallotus philippensis

[amazon_link asins=’B00R1P82UW,B00HNWNXAW,B009D3IV7O,B00YI2S0P8,B00R9GM5K6,B00TKI27YK,B06WWGWGDS,B00JYW5B04,B01GYBSLFO’ template=’ProductCarousel’ store=’finmeacur-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’4d2fc798-1560-11e7-b05a-8581ae3ef14c’]

Botanical Name :Mallotus philippensis
Family: Euphorbiaceae
Subfamily: Acalyphoideae
Tribe: Acalypheae
Genus: Mallotus
Species: M. philippensis
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Malpighiales

Other scientific names :Croton philippinense,Echinus philippinensis Rottlera manilensis,Rottlera philippinensis

Common Names:Apuyot (Sul.),Pikal (Sbl.), Buas (Ilk.), Rohini, Darandang (Tag.), Sala (Tag., Bis.), Kamala (Engl.)  Tafu (Ibn.)
Kamela (Engl.), Tagusala (P. Bis) ,Panagisen (Ibn.)  Tutula (Tagb.) ,Panagisian (Ibn., Klg., Neg.)  Rottlera (Engl.) ,Pañgaplasin (Ilk.),Indian Kamila,Banato

Habitat ;
It occurs in India, China (South), Malesia to Australia, Melanesia, Japan (Ryukyu), Thailand, Indochina, Laos (Khammouan).
. The southern most limit of natural distribution is Mount Keira, south of Sydney. The species name refers to the type specimen being collected in the Philippines, where it is known as Banato.

Description:
A tree growing to a height of 4 to 10 meters, with the branchlets, young leaves and inflorescence covered with brown hairs. Leaves are alternate, oblong-ovate, with a pointed tip and rounded base, 7 to 16 cm long, with toothed or entire margins. Upper surface of the leaf what two smooth glands; the lower surface, glaucous and hairy with numerous, scattered crimson glands. Male flowers are numerous, 3 mm in diameter, axillary, solitary or fasicled spikes, 5 to 8 cm long. Female flowers are in solitary racemes. Fruit is spherical, 6 to 8 mm in diameters, densely covered with red or crimson powder, with three cells, each containing a dark grey, rounded seed that is flattened on one side.

click to see the pictures.>.(01)...(1).…...(2)……...(3).………(4).

Chemical Constituents and properties:
Considered antibacterial, anticancer, antihelminthic, antifertility, antispasmodic, astringent, contracepticeptive, laxative, vermifuge, and purgative and vulnerary.

Extract of kamala from the glands and hairs yielded a resin, a wax, and the crystalline compound rottlerin.
Kamala also contains a minute amount of essential oil, which when gently warmed emits a peculiar odor.

The principle constituent, rottlerin, is from the kamala resin.
Rottlerin (reddish-yellow resin), 47-80%; fixed oil, 5.83-24%; citric acid; mallotoxin; kamalin.
The seed contains a fixed oil, camul oil and a bitter glucoside.
According to Ayurveda, leaves are bitters, cooling and appetizer.
Fruit is anthelminthic, vulnerary, detergent, maturant, carminative

Medicinal Uses:
Parts used and preparation: Leaves, bark and seeds.
Folkloric
Fungal skin infections: Pound leaves or seeds and apply on affected areas.
The red glands of the fruit is antiherpetic and antihelminthic.
Poulticed leaves and bark used for skin diseases – ringworm and scabies; poulticed seeds used for wound healing.
Powder taken with milk for tapeworms, repeated as necessary.
In india, used for bronchitis, abdominal diseases, spleen enlargement.
Elsewhere, used for constipation, anorexia, cancers, dermatosis, cramps, dysmenorrhea.

Studies
• Antifilarial Activity: The effect of aqueous and alcoholic extracts of the leaves of Mallotus philippensis was studied on the spontaneous movements of the whole worm and nerve-muscle preparation of Setaria cervic and on the survival of microfilariae in vitro.
Antimicrobial: In an ethnopharmacological screening in Nepal, the bark from Mallotus philippensis was found to be active against gram-positive and gram-negative bacteria.
* Anti-allergic: Two new phloroglucinol derivatives were isolated from the fruits of Mallotus philippensis. They inhibited histamine release from rat peritoneal mast cells suggesting the new phloroglucinol derivaties have anti-allergic effects.
• Antibacterial / Phytochemical: (1) Study showed excellent inhibition with chloroform and methanol extracts of the stem barkn testing with E coli, K pneumonia, P aeruginosa, S typhi and B subtilis, (2) Mallotus philippinensis was one of plants in a study of 61 Indian medicinal plants that exhibited antimicrobial properties, supporting its folkloric use as antimicrobial treatment for some diseases.
• Antifertility: Study showed when females treated with Kamala seed extract were mated with non-treated males, rate of infertile mating increased in a dose-dependent manner with reduced pregnancy rate and number of implantation sites. Data indicate, Kamala reduced levels of FSH and LH and affected various reproductive parameters of female rats.

Other Uses:
Kamala, the powder obtained from the glands and hairs, besides its medicinal properties, is valued as a dye.
Dye is used for coloring silk and wool.
The oil derived from the seeds is used in paints and varnishes, as hair-fixer, and ointment additive.
Antioxidant for ghee and vegetable oils.
Wood pulp used for making writing and printing paper.

Disclaimer:
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.

Resources:
http://www.stuartxchange.com/Banato.html
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mallotus_philippensis
http://www.biotik.org/laos/species/m/malph/malph_en.html
http://www.indi-journal.info/archives/2748

Enhanced by Zemanta
Advertisements
Categories
Herbs & Plants

Lime-berry

[amazon_link asins=’B00AT1GQW6,B00IO27WTI,B01MU31KCS,B00MOJ11Q2,B00QUTT4PM,B00DVHBYG8,B00DZYELD0,B018WOBLDA,B01ABDDULG’ template=’ProductCarousel’ store=’finmeacur-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’1a34c43c-32e3-11e7-b2db-7d247eeccca6′]

Botanical Name : Triphasia trifolia
Family: Rutaceae
Genus: Triphasia
Species: T. trifolia
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Sapindales

Other scientific Names:Limonia trifolia Burm. f. ,Limonia trifoliata Linn.,Triphasia trifoliata DC. ,Triphasia aurantiola Lour.

Common Names: Sua-sua (Bik.),Suang-kastila (Bik.),Tagimunau (Neg.), Lime-berry (Engl.),Trifoliate limeberry (Engl.),Triphasia (Engl.),Kalamansito (Ilk., Ibn.),Kamalitos (Tag.), Limoncito (Span.),Limonsitong-kastila (Bik.)

Habitat : Triphasia trifolia is native to tropical southeastern Asia in Malaysia and possibly elsewhere.Grows throughout the Philippines, in thickets and settled areas; in some places, abundant.

Description:
It is an evergreen  smooth shrub growing to a height of 2 to 3 meters.
The leaves are trifoliate, glossy dark green, each leaflet 2-4 cm long and 1.5-2 cm broad.  They have two sharp and slender spines at the base. The short-petioled leaves have three leaflets, ovate to oblong-ovate, the terminal one 2 to 4 cm long; the lateral ones, smaller. The margins are crenate. Flowers are very short-stalked, white, fragrant, and about 1 cm long. Fruit is ovoid, fleshy and red, somewhat resinous, about 12 mm long, similar to a small Citrus fruit.

CLICK TO SEE THE PICTURES

Cultivation:
It is grown for its edible fruit, and has been widely introduced to other subtropical to tropical regions of the world; it has become naturalized on a number of islands in the tropical Pacific Ocean.

This tree is also considered a weed in other introduced locations.

Edible Uses:
*Fruit is edilbe, raw or cooked.
*Ripe fruit is pleasant and sweet tasting.
*Fruit can be pickled or made into jams.

Medicinal Uses:
Parts utilized  :Leaves and fruits.

Constituents and Properties
• Berries are lemon-scented.
• Fragrant white flowers have a scent of orange blossoms.
• Leaves exude a resinous scent when bruised.
• Considered antifungal and antibacterial.
• Study yielded a new bicoumarin from the leaves and stems; the two coumarinic moieties are derivatives of mexoticin and meranzin hydrate.
• From the oil 81 compounds were identified, the main constituent was germacrene B.

Folkloric
*Leaves applied externally for colic, diarrhea, and skin afflictions.
*Fruits used for cough and sore throat.
*Preparation: Peel the fruits and soak overnight lime (apog) water. Rinse, and boil in 1 cup water with 1/2 cup sugar. Rinse and boil a second and third time as preferred, syrupy or candied, using as needed for cough or sore throat.

Studies
• Phenolics / Anti-HSV: Study on the inhibitory effects of phenolic compounds on herpes simplex virus and HIV included 13 coumarins from Triphasia trifolia. The data suggests the bis-hydroxyphenyl structure as a potential target for anti-HSV and HIV drugs development.
• Bicoumarin: Study yielded a new bicoumarin from the leaves and stems of Triphasia trifolia.The two coumarinic moieties are derivatives of mexoticin and meranzin hydrate.

Others Uses:
*Leaves used in making aromatic bath salts.
*Leaves used as cosmetic.
*Cultivated for its ornamental fragrant flower and edible red fruit. Attractive as a garden hedge.
*The Limeberry has been used as a bonsai plant…....CLICK & SEE….

Disclaimer:
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.

Resources:
http://www.stuartxchange.com/Limonsito.html
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Triphasia_trifolia
http://www.tradewindsfruit.com/limeberry.htm
http://www.artofbonsai.org/galleries/worldview06.php

Categories
Herbs & Plants

Mañgoñgot

[amazon_link asins=’384659007X,B072L53HKR,B01EOQYCGS,3659256927,B00KTB1ZHW,B071YQLNHK,3843361959,3832508503,B071RQNPNM’ template=’ProductCarousel’ store=’finmeacur-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’e0523c0a-32e3-11e7-ab49-fde9d17a4b59′]

Botanical Name :Clerodendrum inerme (Linn.) Gaertn
Family : Verbenaceae

Other Scientific Names:  Clerodendrum commersonii Spreng.,Clerodendrum nerifolium Wall. ,Volkameria commersonii Poir.,Volkameria inermis Linn. ,Volkameria nereifolia Roxb.,Clerodendrum capsulare Blanco,

Common Names: Gaertn. Ang-angri (Ilk.),Baliseng (Bis.),Busel-busel (Ilk.),Mañgoñgot (Tag.),Samin-añga (Sul.),Tabang-oñgong (P. Bis.),Seaside clerodendron (Engl.) ,Garden quinine (Engl.) ,Sorcerer’s bush (Engl.),Wild jasmine (Engl.) ,Ku lang shu (Chin.)

Habitat : Mañgoñgot is found along the seashore and beside tidal streams throughout the Philippines. It also occurs in India to Formosa, and through Malaya to tropical Australia and Polynesia.

Description:
This plant is an erect or somewhat straggling shrub 1 to 4 meters high. The leaves are ovate, oblong-ovate, or elliptic-ovate, 4 to 8 centimeters long, 2 to 5 centimeters wide, shinning, smooth, entire, and pointed at the tip. The inflorescence (cyme) is usually composed of three flowers and is borne in the axils of the leaves. The calyx is green, narrowly funnel-shaped, and furnished with 5 very short teeth. The corolla is about 3 centimeters long and comprises a slender, white tube spreading, purple-tinged lobes which are about 7 millimeters long. The stamens are long-exserted, and purple. The fruit is obovoid, about 1.5 centimeters long, and splitting into 4 pyrenes. The calyx in the fruit is about 1 centimeter in diameter.

click & see the pictures

Medicinal Uses:
Parts used: Root, leaves.

Constituents:
* Leaves yield a bitter principle that is entirely removed by ether; and treatment with alcohol and water yields extracts free from bitterness. The bitter principle shows a resemblance to Chiretta (Swertia chirata), a gentianaceous plant.
* Leaves also yield a fragrant stearoptin with an apple-like odor; resin; gum; brown coloring matter; and ash containing a large amount of sodium chloride (24.01% of the ash).
* Study of hexane extract of the aerial parts isolated an aliphatic glucoside characterized as pentadecanoic acid-ß-D-glucoside. A butanol extract yielded acacetin and apigenin.

Properties:
*Leaves are mucilaginous and fragrant.
*Considered alterative, febrifuge and resolvent.

Folkloric
*In the Philippines, root decoction is used as febrifuge and alterative.
*Leaves are used in poultices as resolvent.
*Elsewhere, the root, boiled in oil, is applied like a liniment for rheumatism.
*In Guam, the bitter root, leaves and wood are used by natives as a remedy for intermittent fevers.
*Poultices of leaves used for swellings to prevent suppuration.
*Leaves and roots, in tincture and decoction, used as substitute for quinine.
*Juice of leaves and root used as alterative in scrofulous and venereal diseases.
*Poultices of leaves applied to resolve buboes.
*Leaf bath recommended for mani and for itches.
*At one time, sailors of Macassar were reported to take the fruit, seeds and roots to sea, and a decoction or pounded seeds were ingested when taken sick by ingestion of poisonous fish and crabs.
*Leaves, eaten with rice, used to increase the appetite.
*In Java, fruit used as medicine for dysentery.
*In Africa, used to treat hypertension.
*In traditional Indian medicine, leaves used for treating fever, cough, skin rahses, boils; also, for treating umbilical cord infection and cleaning the uterus.

Studies :
• Megastigmane / Iridoid Glucosides: Study of aerial parts of C. inerme yielded two megastimane glucosides (sammangaosides A and B) and an iridoid glucoside (sammangaoside C) with 15 known compounds.
Hepatoprotective: Study of ethanolic extract of C. inerme leaves in CCl4-induced liver damage in Swiss albino rats showed hepatoprotective activity with significant reduction of liver enzymes ALT, AST and alkaline phosphatase, with significant increase in glutathione level.
Hypotensive Activity: Study of aqueous extract of Clerodendrum inerme leaves showed a hypotensive effect attributted to the presence of chemical elements such as alkaloids and polyphenols. Results support its traditional use for its hypotensive effect.
• Antifungal: Study of the ethyl acetate and hexane extracts of leaves and stems of C. inerme and C. phlomidis showed both inhibited inhibition of all plant and human pathogenic fungi. The leaf extract of C. inerme inhibited plant pathogenic fungi better than the human dermatophytes.
• Antioxidant / Free Radical Scavenging Activity: Study of methanolic extract of leaves of C. inerme showed free radical scavenging activity increasing with concentration, with maximum activity at 2500 mg/mL. Antioxidant activity may be due to phenolic compounds.
• Antibacterial / Wound Healing: Study of methanol, ethyl acetate and aqueous extracts showed significant inhibition against 15 of 18 bacterial tested. Results clearly showed the leaves were effective in controlling bacterial pathogens, particular gram positive bacteria. Results also confirmed its utility as a wound-healing agent.
• Anti-Inflammatory / Analgesic: Study of the methanol extract of C. inerme in animal models exhibited anti-inflammatory activty. In addition, it showed significant analgesic activity in acetic acid induced-writhing model. The effects were attributed largely to its antioxidant and lysosomal membrane stabilizing effects.

Disclaimer:
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.

Resources:
http://www.bpi.da.gov.ph/Publications/mp/pdf/m/mangongot.pdf
http://www.stuartxchange.com/Mangongot.html

Enhanced by Zemanta
Categories
Herbs & Plants

Guamúchil (Sweet Tamarined)

[amazon_link asins=’B01N8Q72S3,B01DV6H4C6,B01H9H7LRQ,B01E1J85NY,B01DU4T8M8,B001CITRPS,6074863393,B01N5208IN,B01EJV956A’ template=’ProductCarousel’ store=’finmeacur-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’9a5b6d77-5c0e-11e7-90e9-5509b76e986c’]

Botanical Name :Pithecellobium dulce
Family: Fabaceae
Genus: Pithecellobium
Species: P. dulce
Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Magnoliophyta
Class: Magnoliopsida
Subclass: Rosidae
Order: Fabales

Other scientific Names: Inga camatchili,Inga dulcis,Inga lanceolata,Mimosa dulcis.Mimosa unguis,Acacia dulcis Roxb.

Common Names :Camachile (Pamp.),Kamarsiles (Tag.),Chamultis (Ig.),Kamatsele, Damortis (Ilk.)  Kamonsiles (Tag.),Damulkis (Bon.),Kamunsil (P. Bis.), Kamachili (Tag., Bik.)  Karamansili (Ibn.),Kamachilis (Tag.)  Komonsili (P. Bis.),Kamanchilis (P. Bis., Mag.) ,Komontos (Ting.),
Kamansile (Tag.)  Komontres (Ting.),Kamantilis (Pang.)   Madras thorn (Engl.),Sweet tamarind (Engl.)

It is known by the name Madras Thorn, but it is not native to Madras. The name Manila Tamarind is misleading, since it is neither closely related to tamarind, nor native to Manila. The name monkeypod is more commonly used for the Rain Tree (Albizia saman). Other names include Blackbead, Sweet Inga, Cuauhmochitl (Nahuatl), Guamúchil (Spanish), ‘Opiuma (Hawaiian), Vilayati ambli (Gujarati),  Jungle jalebi or Ganga imli (Hindi), Tetul (Bengali), Seeme hunase (Kannada),  Vilayati chinch (Marathi) , Kodukkappuli (Tamil), and Seema chinta (Telugu)

Referred to as manila tamarind because of the sweet-sour tamarind-like taste. Genus Pithecellobium derives from from the Greek words ‘pithekos’ (ape) and ‘lobos’ (pod), and the species name ‘dulce’ from the Latin ‘dulcis’ meaning sweet.

Habitat :Native to Mexico, Central America, and northern South America. It is introduced and extensively naturalised in the Caribbean, Florida, Guam and Southeast Asia.(Found throughout the Philippines at low or medium altitudes.) It is considered an invasive species in Hawaii.

Description:
Guamúchil is a tree that reaches a height of about 5 to 8 m (16 to 26 ft) with pendulous branches, with short, sharp stipular spines. Its trunk is spiny and its leaves are bipinnate and 4 to 8 cm long. Each pinna has a single pair of ovate-oblong leaflets that are about 2 to 4 m (6.6 to 13 ft) long. The flowers are greenish-white, fragrant,in dense heads, 1 cm in diameter, sessile and reach about 12 cm (4.7 in) in length though appear shorter due to coiling. The flowers produce a pod with an edible pulp. The seeds are black.

You may click to see the picture:-

DIFFERENT PICTURES

The tree

Pithecellobium dulce old tree trunk

Pithecellobium dulce flowers

Pithecellobium dulce beans

Pods are turgid, twisted, and spiral, 10 to 18 cm long, 1 cm wide, and dehiscent along the lower suture. Seeds are 6-8, with an edible, whitish, pulpy aril. The arillus is sweet when the fruit is ripe.

Propagation & Cultivation : The seeds are dispersed via birds that feed on the sweet pod. Guamúchil is drought-resistant and can survive in dry lands from sea level to an elevation of 300 m (980 ft), making it suitable for cultivation as a street tree.Trees are very drought tolerant but also grow in areas of moderate rainfall. Grow in almost any soil type.

Edible Uses:
The seedpods contain a sweet pulp that can be eaten raw or prepared as a beverage.

CLICK TO SEE..>.....(1)..…..(2).

Constituents:
*Tannin, 25.36%; fixed oil, 18.22%, olein.
*A glycoside quercitin has been isolated.
*Seeds have been reported to contain steroids, saponins, lipids, phospholipids, glycosides, glycolipids and polysaccharides.
*Roots reported to be estrogenic.

Medicinal Uses:

Parts used : Bark, leaves.

Properties: Considered abortifacient, anodyne, astringent, larvicidal, antibacterial, antiinflammatory, febrifuge, antidiabetic.

Folkloric
• Frequent bowel movements: Decoction of bark taken as tea.
• The leaves, when applied as plasters, used for pain, venereal sores.
• Salted decoction of leaves, for indigestion; also used as abortifacient.
• Bark used in dysentery, dermatitis and eye inflammation.
• In Brazil, P. avaremotem, used as a cancer elixir.
• In Mexico, decoction of leaves for earaches, leprosy, toothaches and larvicide.
• In India, bark of the plant used as astringent in dysentery, febrifuge. Also used for dermatitis and eye inflammations. Leaves used as abortifacient.
• In Guiana, root bark used for dysentery and as febrifuge.

Studies :
Anti-Inflammatory / Antibacterial: Study of the fresh flowers of Pithecellobium dulce yielded a glycoside quercitin. The activity of the flavonol glycoside confirmed its antiinflammatory and antibacterial properties.
• Phenolics / Antioxidant: Free Radical Scavenging Activity of Folklore: Pithecellobium dulce Benth. Leaves: Study of the aqueous extract of Pithecellobium dulce leaves revealed phenolics including flavonoids and showed potent free radical scavenging activity..
• Anti-inflammatory Triterpene: Anti-inflammatory triterpene saponins of Pithecellobium dulce: characterization of an echinocystic acid bisdesmoside. A new bisdesmodic triterpenoid saponin, dulcin, was isolated from the seeds of PD
• Genotoxicity: Mutagenic and Antimutagenic Activities in Philippine Medicinal and Food Plants: In a study of 138 medicinal plants for genotoxicity, Pithecellobium dulce was one of 12 that exhibited detectable genotoxicity in any system.
Anti-tuberculosis / Antimicrobial: Hexane, chloroform and alcoholic leaf extracts were studied for activity against Mycobacterium tuberculosis strains. The alcoholic extract showed good inhibitory activity and antimicrobial activity against secondary pathogens.
Anti-Diabetic: Study of ethanolic and aqueous leaf extract of P dulce in STZ-induced diabetic model in rats showed sigificant activity, aqueous more than the alcoholic extract, comparable to glibenclamide.
• Anti-Ulcer / Free Radical Scavenging: Study of the hydroalcoholic extract of PD was found to possess good antioxidant activity and suggests possible antiulcer activity with its free-radical scavenging and inhibition of H, K-ATPase activities comparable to omeprazole. Phytochemical screening yielded flavonoids – quercetin, rutin, kaempferol, naringin, daidzein.

Disclaimer:
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.


Resources:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pithecellobium_dulce
http://www.stuartxchange.com/Kamatsile.html
http://www.tradewindsfruit.com/manila_tamarind.htm

[amazon_link asins=’B018YPF4OE,B018YPF4OE’ template=’ProductCarousel’ store=’finmeacur-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’b2c9f2d8-eed6-11e6-91b6-930dca74ed54′]

Enhanced by Zemanta
Categories
Herbs & Plants

Rubber Plant

[amazon_link asins=’B00OALMPH6,B00EOQLYEM,B00482TD1S,B013J9TTYG,B01ERMWBGW’ template=’ProductCarousel’ store=’finmeacur-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’78bf9ce0-f32d-11e6-9afb-ebd58b011e7b’]

Botanical Name : Ficus elastica
Family: Moraceae
Tribe: Ficeae
Genus: Ficus
Subgenus: Urostigma
Species: F. elastica
Kingdom: Plantae
Division:
Magnoliophyta
Class: Magnoliopsida
Order: Urticales

Common Names : Balete (Tag.)  ,Indian rubber tree (Engl.)   ,Rubber tree ,Rubber plant   ,Assam rubber (Engl.)

Habitat : Native to northeast India and southern Indonesia.

Description:
Glabrous spreading tree, with numerous adventitious roots from the trunk and branches.
Leaves are large and smooth, leathery and shiny, slenderly acuminate and entirem with prominent midribs. The stipules are usually red, often as long as the leaves.

 

click to see…….(01).….(1).…..(2)…….(3)…..…(4).…..(5)...…..(6)....
It is a fat bush in the banyan group of figs, growing to 30–40 metres (98–130 ft) (rarely up to 60 metres / 200 feet) tall, with a stout trunk up to 2 metres (6.6 ft) diameter. The trunk develops aerial and buttressing roots to anchor it in the soil and help support heavy branches. It has broad shiny oval leaves 10–35 centimetres (3.9–14 in) long and 5–15 centimetres (2.0–5.9 in) broad; leaf size is largest on young plants (occasionally to 45 centimetres / 18 inches long), much smaller on old trees (typically 10 centimetres / 3.9 inches long). The leaves develop inside a sheath at the apical meristem, which grows larger as the new leaf develops. When it is mature, it unfurls and the sheath drops off the plant. Inside the new leaf, another immature leaf is waiting to develop.

As with other members of the genus Ficus, the flowers require a particular species of fig wasp to pollinate it in a co-evolved relationship. Because of this relationship, the rubber plant does not produce highly colourful or fragrant flowers to attract other pollinators. The fruit is a small yellow-green oval fig 1 centimetre (0.39 in) long, barely edible; it will only contain viable seed where the relevant fig wasp species is present.

In parts of India, people guide the roots of the tree over chasms to eventually form living bridges.

Cultivation:
In cultivation, it prefers bright sunlight but not hot temperatures. It has a high tolerance for drought, but prefers humidity and thrives in wet, tropical conditions. When grown as an ornamental plant hybrids derived from Ficus elastica Robusta with broader, stiffer and more upright leaves are commonly used instead of the wild form. Many such forms exist, often with variegated leaves.

The figs of F. elasticaMost cultivated plants are produced by asexual propagation. This can be done by planting cuttings or air layering. The latter method requires the propagator to cut a slit in the plant’s stem. The wound, which oozes with the plant’s latex sap, is packed with rooting hormone and wrapped tightly with moist sphagnum moss. The whole structure is wrapped in plastic and left for a few months. When it is unwrapped, new roots have developed from the plant’s auxiliary buds. The stem is severed and the new plant is potted on its own.

Chemical constituents and characteristics:
The latex contains caoutchouc, 10-30 per cent; a bitter substance; albuminoid. The wax contains cerotic acid.

Medicinal Uses:
Parts used:  Rootlets and bark.

Folkloric
* Skin eruptions and dermatitis: Boil one cup of chopped bark in 1/2 gallon of water for 10 mins; use decoction to wash involved areas, twice daily.
* Decoction of aerial rootlets used for wounds, cuts and sores.
* Bark is astringent and used as styptics for wounds.
* Decoction of latex for parasitic worms (trichuris trichura).
* In northern Cameroon, used as fertility enhancement.
*Plant that Detoxify the Air
* Of the ficus plants tested, the rubber plant is the best for removing chemical toxins from the indoor environment, especially formaldehyde.

Studies:-
• Antiinflammatory: Study showed marked inhibition of experimentally induced inflammation, similar to those achieved with indomethacin, an effect attributed to the presence of flavonoids.
• Hypoallergenicity: (1) Ficus elastica has been suggested as a possible source of natural rubber latex without the allergenicity of latex protein from Hevea basiliensis. (2) Prelim studies showed that natural rubber from Ficus elastica do not cause allergic reactions in hypersenstivie humans
• Antimicrobial / Constituents: Study isolated four known compounds from the leaves of F elastica – emodin, sucrose, morin and rutrin. Results showed antimicrobial activity against B cereus and Pseudomoas aeruginosa. No Antifungal activity was observed.

Other Uses:
Ficus elastica or rubber plant  is grown around the world as an ornamental plant, outside in frost-free climates from the tropical to the Mediterranean and inside in colder climates as a houseplant. Although it is grown in Hawai?i, the species of fig wasp required to allow it to spread naturally is not present.

It can yield a milky white latex also known as sap, which has been used in some cases to make rubber, but it should not be confused with the Pará rubber tree, the main commercial source of latex for rubber making. This sap is also an irritant to the eyes and skin and can be fatal if taken internally.

Superstition: An occasional folkloric advice against having it as a decorative bonsai  inside the house as it is believed to invite ghosts.

Disclaimer:
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.

Resources:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ficus_elastica
http://www.stuartxchange.com/Balete.html