BOERHAAVIA DIFFUSA L.

B. repens L.
Family: Nyctaginaceae

Bengali/vernacular name: Punarnava, Gandhapurna, Shetapurna.
English name: Spreading Hogweed, Pigweed.

Description of the plant:
A large, diffuse herb with long prostrate, divaricately branched, slender stem, 15-60 cm long. Leaves 1.25-5 cm long, thick, broadly ovate or suborbicular, rounded at the apex, usually white beneath. Flowers small, pink, 4-10 together, in small umbels, arranged in very slender, axillary and terminal panicles.

Using information:
Plant is stomachic, laxative and expectorant, in large doses emetic. Root and leaf juice is effective as diuretic in anasarca and dropsy. It is also used in epilepsy, pain in abdomen due to congestion of blood, dysentery, prolapsus ani and fistula ani. Leaves and roots are also useful in jaundice, anaemia, ascites ophthalmia, gonorrhoea, scanty urine and possess significant anti-inflammatory activity similar to hydrocortisone. Plant powder is useful against inflammatory renal diseases and cancer.


Boerhaavia Diffusa
BOERHAAVIA DIFFUSA L.


EtOH(50%) extract of roots and plant is spasmolytic, cardiotonic, raises bood pressure and relaxant; extract is anti-inflammatory and antibacterial (Asolkar et al., 1992).

Chemical constituents:
Various parts of the plant contain two quinolozidine alkaloids, punarnovine I and punarnovine II, squalene, phytol, sitosterol, myricyl alcohol, myristic and oxalic acids, tannins and potassium nitrate. Roots contain a glycoside, hypoxantine-9-L-arabinofuranoside, hentriacontane, ursolic acid, ß-sitosterol, stigmasterol, amino acids and oxanthrone, boerhavine and some rotenoids, boerhavinones A, B, C, D, E and F, repenone and repenol (Ghani, 2003).

Distribution:
All over Bangladesh in fallow lands.