Family: Fabaceae

Synonyms: Dolichos lablab L.

Bengali/Vernacular Name: Shim, Ushi, Urushi; Soi (Chittagong).

English Name: Bean, Country Bean.

Description of the Plant:
A large twiner. Leaves 3-foliolate; leaflets 5-15 cm long, ovate, acute, base cuneate or deltoid. Flowers white or pink, fascicled on nodes of  lax racemes, 15-23 cm long. Pods 3.8-5 cm long, compressed, tipped with the hooked persistent base of the style.

Using Information:
Seeds are considered laxative, diuretic, galactagogue, febrifuge, stomachic, tonic, antispasmodic and aphrodisiac; useful in inflammations. Leaves are emmenagogue and reputed alexipharmac; given in colic. Fresh leaves pounded and mixed with lime are rubbed over ringworms to cure (Yusuf et al. 2009).

Chemical Constituents:
In addition to starch, beans contain proteins and amino acids as principal Chemical Constituents. Leaves and fruits contain sterols (including cholsetorol and its derivatives), fatty acids, palmitic, palmitoleic, linoleic and linolenic acids. A pyridine alkaloid, trigonelline and sterols have been isolated from tissue cultures of seeds, stems and leaves. Pod exudates contain as many as 42 different fatty acids and their Me-esters (C11-C25).

Seeds contain antimicrobial proteins, globulins, albumins and lectins; leghaemoglobin, amionpropylamino alcohols and a number of polyamines including diaminopropane, putrescine, spermidine, spermine, thermospermine and aminopropylhomosperemidine, lipids, fatty acids, enzyme, β-N-acetylhexosaminidase  and carbohydrates. Cytokinins have been isolated from immature seeds. Pectic polysaccharides have been isolated from the seed husks (Ghani, 2003). A biologically active substance obtained from immature seeds and identified as 3-O-β-D-glucopyranosyl gibberellin A1 was much less active than gibberellin A1. L-pipecolic acid has been isolated from legumes (Rastogi & Mehrotra, 1990 & 93).


Cultivated throughout Bangladesh as a vegetable crop.

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Retutn from LABLAB PURPUREUS to Medicinal Plants: Part L