BUTEA MONOSPERMA (Lam.) Taub.

B. frondosa Roxb.
Family: Fabaceae

Bengali/vernacular name: Palas, Kingsuk, Kinaka.
English name: Parrot tree, Flame of the forest.

Description of the plant:
BUTEA MONOSPERMA (Lam.) Taub. is a medium-sized deciduous tree. Leaves 3-foliolate; leaflets 10-20 cm long, coriaceous, terminal one roundish with a rhomboid base, lateral smaller, obliquely rounded at the base. Flowers large, in rigid racemes, 15 cm long; Calyx 13 mm long, dark olive green, densely velvety outside; corolla 3.8-5 cm long, orange. Pods oblong, flat, thin, 12.5-20 cm long.

Using information:
The bark is aphrodisiac, laxative and anthelmintic; useful in dysentery, piles and hydrocele; weak decoction of bark is useful in catarrh, cold and cough. Gum of the bark is an excellent astringent to the bowels; useful in diarrhoea, dysentery, stomatitis, cough, pterygium and corneal opacities; cures excessive perspiration. The seeds are laxative and anthelmintic; paste of it is a good remedy for Ascaris and ringworm. The leaves are astringent, carminative, anthelmintic, aphrodisiac, and tonic; used externally to disperse boils, pimples, worms and piles. Flowers are astringent to the bowels, depurative and diuretic; cures leprosy, strangury, gout, skin diseases and burning sensation.


Butea Monosperma
BUTEA MONOSPERMA (Lam.) Taub.


Alcoholic extract of the whole plant produces persistent vesodepression in cats and showed activity against earthworms. Aquous extract of flower show antiimplantation in rats. EtOH(50%) extract of leaf is spasmogenic (Asolkar et al., 1992). Alcoholic extract of the bark possesses poor antibacterial and antifungal properties (Taniya, 2004).

Chemical constituents:
Chief constituent of the plant is a gum, called 'Butea gum or Bengal kino', which exudes from natural or artificial scars on the bark. The gum contains leucocyanictin. Bark also contains kinnotannic acid and gallic acid, flavonoid, glycosides, butin, butrin, isobutrin, lupeol and ß-sitosterol. Flowers contain flavones and flavonoid constituents including butrin, isobutrin, butein, butin, coreopsin, sulphurein and others, chalcones and amino acids. Seeds contian a fixed oil, albuminoid substances, lectins a highly active anthelmintic principle, palasonin, free amino acids, alkaloids and enzymes (Ghani, 2003).

Distribution:
Chittagong, Chittagong Hill Tracts, Sal forests of Dhaka-Mymensingh, and cultivated elsewhere.