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Useful Tropical Plants

Blumea balsamifera

(L.) DC.

Asteraceae

+ Synonyms

Baccharis salvia Lour.

Blumea appendiculata (Blume) DC.

Blumea grandis (Wall.) DC.

Blumea zollingeriana C.B.Clarke

Conyza appendiculata Blume

Conyza balsamifera L.

Pluchea balsamifera (L.) Lessing

Common Name:

Blumea balsamifera
Cultivated plant in the Philippines
Photograph by: Ramon FVelasquez
Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0
Blumea balsamifera Blumea balsamifera Blumea balsamifera

General Information

Blumea balsamifera is an erect, evergreen undershrub or shrub, rarely a herb or small tree, that smells strongly of camphor[
303
Title
World Agroforesty Centre
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.worldagroforestry.org/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent online database of a huge range of trees giving very good information on each plant - its uses, ecology, identity, propagation, pests etc.
]. It can grow up to 4 metres tall with branching stems 2 - 8cm in diameter that become woody, at least at the base[
303
Title
World Agroforesty Centre
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.worldagroforestry.org/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent online database of a huge range of trees giving very good information on each plant - its uses, ecology, identity, propagation, pests etc.
,
978
Title
The Composite Genus Blumea, A Taxonomic Revision
Publication
Blumea 10:176 - 317
Author
Aban J. Randeria
Publisher
National Herbarium of the Netherlands.
Year
1960
ISBN
 
Description
A complete treatment (as of 1960) of the genus Blumea.
].
The plant has a long history of medicinal use and is also the source of an essential oil. It is often harvested from the wild, whilst it is also grown in gardens and commercially[
303
Title
World Agroforesty Centre
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.worldagroforestry.org/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent online database of a huge range of trees giving very good information on each plant - its uses, ecology, identity, propagation, pests etc.
].

Known Hazards

None known

Botanical References

266
Title
Flora of China
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://flora.huh.harvard.edu/china/
Publisher
Missouri Botanical Garden Press; St. Louis.
Year
1994
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent, comprehensive resource in 25 volumes. In addition to the botanical information the flora also gives basic information on habitat and some uses. An on-line version is also available.
,
978
Title
The Composite Genus Blumea, A Taxonomic Revision
Publication
Blumea 10:176 - 317
Author
Aban J. Randeria
Publisher
National Herbarium of the Netherlands.
Year
1960
ISBN
 
Description
A complete treatment (as of 1960) of the genus Blumea.

Range

E. Asia - southern China, Indian subcontinent, Myanmar, Thailand, Cambodia, Laos, Vietnam, Malaysia, Indonesia, Philippines.

Habitat

Dry fields, thickets, grasslands, mountain slopes, river banks at elevations up to 1,200 metres[
266
Title
Flora of China
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://flora.huh.harvard.edu/china/
Publisher
Missouri Botanical Garden Press; St. Louis.
Year
1994
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent, comprehensive resource in 25 volumes. In addition to the botanical information the flora also gives basic information on habitat and some uses. An on-line version is also available.
]. Roadsides, upland fields, fields infested with Imperata, grazing land, brushwood and forest, and sometimes in wet places on river banks[
303
Title
World Agroforesty Centre
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.worldagroforestry.org/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent online database of a huge range of trees giving very good information on each plant - its uses, ecology, identity, propagation, pests etc.
].

Properties

Weed PotentialYes
Edibility Rating *  *
Medicinal Rating *  *  *
Other Uses Rating *  *
HabitEvergreen Shrub
Height3.00 m
PollinatorsInsects
Cultivation StatusCultivated, Wild

Cultivation Details

A plant of the tropics and subtropics, it can be found at elevations from sea level to 2,200 metres[
303
Title
World Agroforesty Centre
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.worldagroforestry.org/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent online database of a huge range of trees giving very good information on each plant - its uses, ecology, identity, propagation, pests etc.
].
Plants are intolerant of shade[
303
Title
World Agroforesty Centre
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.worldagroforestry.org/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent online database of a huge range of trees giving very good information on each plant - its uses, ecology, identity, propagation, pests etc.
]. Essential oil production is greatly decreased when plants grow in the shade[
303
Title
World Agroforesty Centre
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.worldagroforestry.org/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent online database of a huge range of trees giving very good information on each plant - its uses, ecology, identity, propagation, pests etc.
].
Blumea balsamifera flowers throughout the year[
303
Title
World Agroforesty Centre
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.worldagroforestry.org/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent online database of a huge range of trees giving very good information on each plant - its uses, ecology, identity, propagation, pests etc.
]. It produces seed abundantly and easily propagates spontaneously[
303
Title
World Agroforesty Centre
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.worldagroforestry.org/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent online database of a huge range of trees giving very good information on each plant - its uses, ecology, identity, propagation, pests etc.
]. It is often considered a weed, though it is easily eradicated[
303
Title
World Agroforesty Centre
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.worldagroforestry.org/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent online database of a huge range of trees giving very good information on each plant - its uses, ecology, identity, propagation, pests etc.
].
The plant is very tolerant of fire and is frequently found in regularly burned grassland since it readily sprouts from underground parts after the leaves and branches have been killed[
303
Title
World Agroforesty Centre
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.worldagroforestry.org/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent online database of a huge range of trees giving very good information on each plant - its uses, ecology, identity, propagation, pests etc.
].
In gardens, leaves are picked when required. On a larger scale, leaves are cut up to four times a year or whole plants are harvested[
303
Title
World Agroforesty Centre
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.worldagroforestry.org/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent online database of a huge range of trees giving very good information on each plant - its uses, ecology, identity, propagation, pests etc.
]..
A widely distributed and very variable plant in its foliage and degree of pubescence; the flower heads and florets, however, are remarkably uniform throughout its range. Plants growing in a montane habitat appear more woolly than those from the lowland[
303
Title
World Agroforesty Centre
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.worldagroforestry.org/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent online database of a huge range of trees giving very good information on each plant - its uses, ecology, identity, propagation, pests etc.
].
The plant can flower all year round[
978
Title
The Composite Genus Blumea, A Taxonomic Revision
Publication
Blumea 10:176 - 317
Author
Aban J. Randeria
Publisher
National Herbarium of the Netherlands.
Year
1960
ISBN
 
Description
A complete treatment (as of 1960) of the genus Blumea.
].
This species is the most woody and fragrant member of the genus[
303
Title
World Agroforesty Centre
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.worldagroforestry.org/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent online database of a huge range of trees giving very good information on each plant - its uses, ecology, identity, propagation, pests etc.
].

Edible Uses

The camphor-scented leaves are sometimes used as an aromatic condiment with various foods[
301
Title
Cornucopia II
Publication
 
Author
Facciola. S.
Publisher
Kampong Publications, California.
Year
1998
ISBN
0-9628087-2-5
Description
The second edition of an excellent guide to the edible uses of plants, though it does not give any details of cultivation etc.
].

Medicinal

Blumea balsamifera has a very long history of herbal use. It is one of the most common and widely used medicinal plants for a number of ailments in southeast Asia and has been used in Chinese medicine since ancient times[
303
Title
World Agroforesty Centre
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.worldagroforestry.org/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent online database of a huge range of trees giving very good information on each plant - its uses, ecology, identity, propagation, pests etc.
]. A diuretic and kidney-stone medicine is prepared commercially from the plant in the Philippines[
303
Title
World Agroforesty Centre
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.worldagroforestry.org/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent online database of a huge range of trees giving very good information on each plant - its uses, ecology, identity, propagation, pests etc.
].

The plant is carminative, diaphoretic, emmenagogue, expectorant, mild stimulant, stomachic, sudorific and vermifuge[
303
Title
World Agroforesty Centre
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.worldagroforestry.org/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent online database of a huge range of trees giving very good information on each plant - its uses, ecology, identity, propagation, pests etc.
]. It is used to treat influenza, bronchitis, cough, arthritis, insomnia, dyspepsia and dysmenorrhoea, either in infusion or as an inhalation over a steam bath[
303
Title
World Agroforesty Centre
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.worldagroforestry.org/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent online database of a huge range of trees giving very good information on each plant - its uses, ecology, identity, propagation, pests etc.
].
A decoction of the fresh leaves, alone or in combination with other plant preparations, is used as a bath for women after childbirth and also for young children[
303
Title
World Agroforesty Centre
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.worldagroforestry.org/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent online database of a huge range of trees giving very good information on each plant - its uses, ecology, identity, propagation, pests etc.
].
The plant is used as a topical application for septic ulcers[
303
Title
World Agroforesty Centre
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.worldagroforestry.org/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent online database of a huge range of trees giving very good information on each plant - its uses, ecology, identity, propagation, pests etc.
]. Poultices of the pounded leaves are applied to treat haemorrhoids, and an alcoholic maceration serves as a liniment for rheumatism[
303
Title
World Agroforesty Centre
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.worldagroforestry.org/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent online database of a huge range of trees giving very good information on each plant - its uses, ecology, identity, propagation, pests etc.
].

Other Uses

In China ngai camphor oil, an essential oil obtained by steam distillation of the young leaves, is widely used in medicine and in rituals. The refined camphor 'ngai p'ien' is considered of higher quality than camphor from Cinnamomum camphora, but is not rated as highly as that from Dryobalanops spp[
303
Title
World Agroforesty Centre
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.worldagroforestry.org/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent online database of a huge range of trees giving very good information on each plant - its uses, ecology, identity, propagation, pests etc.
].
The leaves contain about 0.5% of an essential oil whose main component is borneol (about 25%), a compound closely related to camphor and easily converted into it by oxidation[
310
Title
Plant Resources of Southeast Asia
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://proseanet.org/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
Lots of information on the uses of the plants of SE Asia.
]. Other components are 1,8-cineole, limonene, and camphor; other sources also mention 'BETA'-eudesmol, 'BETA'-camphene and myrcene[
310
Title
Plant Resources of Southeast Asia
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://proseanet.org/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
Lots of information on the uses of the plants of SE Asia.
]. Camphor is an important component of the oil, but its content may vary strongly. This variation may be due to environmental conditions, with some samples from China being free of it, while other samples may contain as much as 75%[
310
Title
Plant Resources of Southeast Asia
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://proseanet.org/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
Lots of information on the uses of the plants of SE Asia.
].

The roots and leaves are used as natural pesticides e.g. Against storage pests and leaf hoppers in rice[
303
Title
World Agroforesty Centre
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.worldagroforestry.org/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent online database of a huge range of trees giving very good information on each plant - its uses, ecology, identity, propagation, pests etc.
].

The white wood is soft[
978
Title
The Composite Genus Blumea, A Taxonomic Revision
Publication
Blumea 10:176 - 317
Author
Aban J. Randeria
Publisher
National Herbarium of the Netherlands.
Year
1960
ISBN
 
Description
A complete treatment (as of 1960) of the genus Blumea.
].

Propagation

Seed - surface sow and do not allow the compost to become dry. Germination is usually good.
Root cuttings.
Stem cuttings. Cuttings are placed in containers under shade. Watering should be carried out with care, as too much water is harmful.
Seedlings and rooted cuttings can be transplanted after about 2 weeks to a place receiving full sunlight.
Cite as: Tropical Plants Database, Ken Fern. tropical.theferns.info. 2019-11-12. <tropical.theferns.info/viewtropical.php?id=Blumea+balsamifera>

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