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Cedrela Toona, And Celastrace

The infusion of the flowers is antispasmodic

NOM. VULG.—Kalantas, Tag., Pam.; Lanigpa, Vis.

USES.—The infusion of the flowers is antispasmodic. The trunk bark is an excellent astringent, and Dr. Waitz recommends it in extract as a treatment for infantile diarrhoea, for which I also have found it very useful. Blume says that it contains marked antispasmodic virtues, and Dr. G. Kennedy confirms it. Other physicians of India, among them Ros and Newton, have recommended the bark as a substitute for cinchona, given dry in doses of 30 grams.

INFUSION.— Bark dry, pounded 30 grams.

Water 150 grams.

Filter and add: Syrup of cinnamon 20 grams.

DOSE.—Several dessert-spoonfuls a day.

The powdered bark is very useful as an application to indolent ulcers which it instantly deodorizes; like powdered quinine it is used in the treatment of superficial gangrene.

BOTANICAL DESCRIPTION.—A large tree. Leaves odd-pinnate. Leaflets oval, lanceolate, acuminate, entire, glabrous, 5–6 pairs. Flowers yellow, in terminal panicles. Calyx 5-toothed. Corolla, 5 oblong petals. Stamens 5, free, inserted on the apex of a disk. Ovaries sessile, 5 many-ovuled cells. Style short. Stigma on a disk. Seed vessel coriaceous, 5 compartments, septicidal, 5-valved. Seeds compressed, pendulous, prolonged in a membranous wing.

HABITAT.—Very common in the islands.


Staff-Tree Family.

Celastrus paniculata, Willd. (C. alnifolia, DC.; C. Rothiana, Roem.; Diosma serrata, Blanco.) NOM. VULG.—Bilogo, Tag.

USES.—I am not acquainted with the medicinal uses of this plant in the Philippines. In India, by means of a primitive system of distillation, they extract from the seeds a dark-colored oil of empyreumatic odor, which under the name of Oleum nigrum was once proclaimed by Dr. Herklots as the sovereign remedy for beriberi.

This oil in doses of 10–15 drops a day is a very powerful stimulant, the action of which is manifested by profuse perspiration several hours after its administration. Malcolmson reports that it has given him good results in several cases of beriberi, particularly in recent cases and those in which nervous and paralytic symptoms predominated. In Concan, the juice of the leaves is given in doses of 30 grams as an antidote for opium. The bruised seeds made into a paste with cow urine are used locally in treatment of itch. They are also used in the treatment of leprosy, gout, rheumatism, and other diseases which according to their medical theories, are derived from “cold humors.” For these purposes they give the seeds internally, beginning with one and increasing daily until 50 are taken. At the same time they make external applications of the oil or of another compound prepared in the following way: Place in an open pot with one opening, seeds of C. paniculata, cloves, benzoin, nutmeg and mace. The pot having been previously heated, is covered with another, inverted over the opening. On the sides of the latter a thick black oil condenses which Herklots very appropriately named Oleum nigrum.

BOTANICAL DESCRIPTION.—A climbing shrub, 6–9° high, without spines. Leaves 6–7′ long by 5′ broad, alternate, petiolate, entire, glabrous, half-ovate. Flowers small and paniculate. Calyx, 5 divisions. Corolla, 5 petals. Stamens 5, inserted in a disc. Anthers oblong. Ovary 3-celled. Stigma 3-lobulate. Style short. Seed vessel the size of a pea, globose, 3-celled, loculicidal, with pulpy seeds.

HABITAT.—Tayabas, Laguna, Ilocos North, San Mateo, Albay. Flowers in April.

Reference book: The Medicinal Plants of the Philippines

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