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Useful Tropical Plants

Melianthus comosus

Vahl

Melianthaceae

+ Synonyms

Common Name:

Melianthus comosus
Flowers
Photograph by: Richardson, R.G. & F.J.
Image credit to Australian National Botanic Gardens
Melianthus comosus Melianthus comosus Melianthus comosus Melianthus comosus Melianthus comosus Melianthus comosus Melianthus comosus

General Information

Melianthus comosus is a multi-stemmed, evergreen, perennial plant producing semi-woody stems from a woody rootstock. It grows from 70 - 240cm tall. All parts of the plant produce a strong, unpleasant smell when bruised[
295
Title
PlantZAfrica.com
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.plantzafrica.com
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent site giving detailed descriptions and uses of many S. African plants.
].
A commonly used traditional medicine in S. Africa, where it is sold in local markets[
395
Title
Pharmaceutical monographs for 60 South African plant species
Publication
 
Author
Scott, G. and Springfield, E.P.
Website
http://www.plantzafrica.com/medmonographs
Publisher
 
Year
2004
ISBN
 
Description
A series of 60 monographs of S. African medicinal plants. Well written, with information on traditional uses and modern research into the plants.
].

Known Hazards

The plant is widely held to be toxic amongst traditional herbalists in S. Africa, where the plant is used in external medicinal applications[
395
Title
Pharmaceutical monographs for 60 South African plant species
Publication
 
Author
Scott, G. and Springfield, E.P.
Website
http://www.plantzafrica.com/medmonographs
Publisher
 
Year
2004
ISBN
 
Description
A series of 60 monographs of S. African medicinal plants. Well written, with information on traditional uses and modern research into the plants.
].

Botanical References


Range

Southern Africa - Namibia, South Africa, Lesotho.

Habitat

Not known

Properties

Medicinal Rating *  *  *
HabitEvergreen Shrub
Height1.50 m
PollinatorsBirds
Cultivation StatusWild

Cultivation Details

A plant of drier areas, mainly in the subtropics, but extending into the tropical zone.
Prefers a light, well-drained, fertile soil[
295
Title
PlantZAfrica.com
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.plantzafrica.com
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent site giving detailed descriptions and uses of many S. African plants.
].

Edible Uses

None known

Medicinal

A common traditional medicine in S. Africa, where it is normally only used externally since it is believed to be toxic[
395
Title
Pharmaceutical monographs for 60 South African plant species
Publication
 
Author
Scott, G. and Springfield, E.P.
Website
http://www.plantzafrica.com/medmonographs
Publisher
 
Year
2004
ISBN
 
Description
A series of 60 monographs of S. African medicinal plants. Well written, with information on traditional uses and modern research into the plants.
].
The plant has been shown to contain saponins and tannins[
395
Title
Pharmaceutical monographs for 60 South African plant species
Publication
 
Author
Scott, G. and Springfield, E.P.
Website
http://www.plantzafrica.com/medmonographs
Publisher
 
Year
2004
ISBN
 
Description
A series of 60 monographs of S. African medicinal plants. Well written, with information on traditional uses and modern research into the plants.
].

The root is used both prophylactically and therapeutically in the treatment of snakebite - for this purpose the root is chewed and a root bark tincture applied locally to the wound[
359
Title
Trees of Sungai Wain
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.nationaalherbarium.nl/Sungaiwain/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent site with factsheets on almost 1,000 species of forest trees growing at Sungai Wain in Indonesia. Each factsheet has good quality pictures plus basic information on the ecology and uses of the plants.
]. A leaf paste or decoction is also utilised for snakebite[
395
Title
Pharmaceutical monographs for 60 South African plant species
Publication
 
Author
Scott, G. and Springfield, E.P.
Website
http://www.plantzafrica.com/medmonographs
Publisher
 
Year
2004
ISBN
 
Description
A series of 60 monographs of S. African medicinal plants. Well written, with information on traditional uses and modern research into the plants.
]

Leaf poultices and leaf decoctions are widely used to treat septic wounds, sores, bruises, backache and rheumatic joints[
295
Title
PlantZAfrica.com
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.plantzafrica.com
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent site giving detailed descriptions and uses of many S. African plants.
].
Warm aqueous leaf infusions may be applied as a lotion to sores, ulcers, bruises, swellings or wounds that are slow to heal, including venereal sores[
395
Title
Pharmaceutical monographs for 60 South African plant species
Publication
 
Author
Scott, G. and Springfield, E.P.
Website
http://www.plantzafrica.com/medmonographs
Publisher
 
Year
2004
ISBN
 
Description
A series of 60 monographs of S. African medicinal plants. Well written, with information on traditional uses and modern research into the plants.
]. A leaf paste may be applied as a local dressing to the affected area[
395
Title
Pharmaceutical monographs for 60 South African plant species
Publication
 
Author
Scott, G. and Springfield, E.P.
Website
http://www.plantzafrica.com/medmonographs
Publisher
 
Year
2004
ISBN
 
Description
A series of 60 monographs of S. African medicinal plants. Well written, with information on traditional uses and modern research into the plants.
].
An ointment of the bark, leaf and flower is used in combination with Melianthus major, Lobostemon fruticosus and Galenia africana to treat wounds[
395
Title
Pharmaceutical monographs for 60 South African plant species
Publication
 
Author
Scott, G. and Springfield, E.P.
Website
http://www.plantzafrica.com/medmonographs
Publisher
 
Year
2004
ISBN
 
Description
A series of 60 monographs of S. African medicinal plants. Well written, with information on traditional uses and modern research into the plants.
].
A decoction is used as an antiseptic wash for skin diseases[
395
Title
Pharmaceutical monographs for 60 South African plant species
Publication
 
Author
Scott, G. and Springfield, E.P.
Website
http://www.plantzafrica.com/medmonographs
Publisher
 
Year
2004
ISBN
 
Description
A series of 60 monographs of S. African medicinal plants. Well written, with information on traditional uses and modern research into the plants.
]. A watery lotion of similar composition is used to treat syphilis and as a gargle for sore throat[
395
Title
Pharmaceutical monographs for 60 South African plant species
Publication
 
Author
Scott, G. and Springfield, E.P.
Website
http://www.plantzafrica.com/medmonographs
Publisher
 
Year
2004
ISBN
 
Description
A series of 60 monographs of S. African medicinal plants. Well written, with information on traditional uses and modern research into the plants.
].
A bath medicated with the herb is said to induce sweating and to relieve joint pains[
395
Title
Pharmaceutical monographs for 60 South African plant species
Publication
 
Author
Scott, G. and Springfield, E.P.
Website
http://www.plantzafrica.com/medmonographs
Publisher
 
Year
2004
ISBN
 
Description
A series of 60 monographs of S. African medicinal plants. Well written, with information on traditional uses and modern research into the plants.
].

Other Uses

None known

Propagation

Seed -
Easily propagated from seed, which is large, black and easy to handle[
295
Title
PlantZAfrica.com
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.plantzafrica.com
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent site giving detailed descriptions and uses of many S. African plants.
]. Sow the seed when it is ripe in deep seed trays in a medium of compost only[
295
Title
PlantZAfrica.com
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.plantzafrica.com
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent site giving detailed descriptions and uses of many S. African plants.
]. When sowing seed in the colder months, germination may take about four weeks[
295
Title
PlantZAfrica.com
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.plantzafrica.com
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent site giving detailed descriptions and uses of many S. African plants.
]. Cover the seeds, keep them moist, leave the seedlings in the trays until the fourth leaf stage. Transplant into a medium of 2 parts compost and 2 parts loam[
295
Title
PlantZAfrica.com
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.plantzafrica.com
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent site giving detailed descriptions and uses of many S. African plants.
].
Cite as: Tropical Plants Database, Ken Fern. tropical.theferns.info. 2019-09-16. <tropical.theferns.info/viewtropical.php?id=Melianthus+comosus>

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