Family: Malvaceae

Bengali/Vernacular Name: Lalmesta, Mesta, Patwa; Kharapata (Chittagong).

Tribal Name: Jang Gri Se (Marma); Sung Krak (Bowm); Kan Sur Ka (Murong).

English Name: Indian Sorrel, Jamaica Sorrel, Natal Sorrel, Red Sorrel, Rosella, Rozelle Hemp.

Description of the Plant:
An erect shrubby annual with red stem and branches. Leaves 5-7.5 cm long, cuneate at the base, usually 3-5 lobed; lobes lanceolate or oblong, serrate. Flowers large, purple with darker centre, axillary, solitary. Capsules ovoid, beaked, hairy.

Using Information:
Leaves are emollient; in Guinea, they are much used as a diuretic, sedative and refrigerant. Decoction of the leaf is laxative. Fruits are antiscorbutic; used in dysentery and diarrhoea. Succulent sepals and leaves are recommended as antimicrobial, anthelmintic and hypotensive drug. Seed oil is used in scabies. The plant has cathartic properties (Yusuf et al. 2009). Seed oil possesses antimicrobial activity (Asolkar et al., 1992).

Chemical Constituents:
The fruits, leaves and stems contain d-malic acid. Leaves contain sitosterol- β-D-galactoside. High concentration of hibiscic acid, flavonoid and heterosides have been isolated from flower (Asolkar et al., 1992). Extract of flowers contain reducing sugars, glycosides, acids, an alkaloid and resins. New glycoside gossytrin have been isolated from flower petals. Seeds contain cholesterol, campesterol, stigmasterol, β-sitosterol, α-spinasterol and ergosterol. Gossypetin-7-glucoside, 8-glucoside, cyanidin-3,5-diglucoside and cyaniding-3(2´-glucosyl-rutnoside); delphinidin-3-sambubioside (canabinin), delphinidin-3-glucoside (myrtillin), cyaniding-3-sambubioside and cyanidin-3-glucoside have also been isolated from the plant (Rastogi & Mehrotra, 1990 & 93).


Cultivated throughout the country.

Share Your Thoughts

Retutn from HIBISCUS SABDARIFFA to Medicinal Plants: Part H