Scientific name: Boerhavia diffusa L.
Synonym: Boerhavia paniculata f. esetosa Heimerl
Bengali/Vernacular name: Punarnava, Gondhapurna, Swetpurna.
Tribal name: Parengnawa (Marma), Perunoa (Murang), Krow-naa-row (Rakhaing).
English name: Spreading hogweed, Pigweed, Wineflower.
Description of the plant: A diffusely spreading, laxly branched, smooth or somewhat hairy herb. Leaves are scattered, ovate, elliptic, or oblong, sometimes wavy, pale beneath, with rounded or pointed apex, and usually rounded base. Cymes are very lax and panicled with slender branches. Flowers are minute, usually fascicled or subumbellate on the ultimate branchlets, pink. Fruits small, 5-ribbed, and glandular.
Plant parts used: Leaf, stem, and root.
Ethnomedicinal uses: Juice extracted from the roots of the plant is advised to take thrice a day (5 ml amount each time) until cough and asthma is cured.
Infusion prepared from the plant is given in febrile convulsion.
Cottonseed-sized pills are made with the dried leaves and stems of the plant are taken thrice a day (one pill each time) for one month to treat impotence.
A fresh juice is extracted from the roots of the plant, after adding some water it is taken thrice a day (10 ml amount each time) for seven days to treat dysentery.
Leaves and stems of the plant are given for the treatment of dyspepsia, tumours, and abdominal pain.
A fresh juice is extracted from the leaves and stems of the plant are taken twice a day for seven days to treat leucorrhoea.
The herb is used for the treatment of epilepsy, fever, constipation, snake bite, headache, pain, hemorrhoids, jaundice, gout, roundworm, urethritis, excessive menstruation, and insomnia.
Distribution: It grows all over the country.
Is this plant misidentified? If yes, please tell us….