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  • Das K

Calotropis procera

| English: French cotton, Apple of Sodom | Sanskrit: Mandaar, Arkaahva, Vasuk, Alarka | Hindi: Aak, Mudar | Tamil: Vellai erukkan | Marathi: Mandara, Rui | Telugu: Mandaaramu | Kannada: Yekke gida | Malayalam: Erikku | Nepali: Aank, Ark

Medicinal Uses: This plant is very useful for swellings or tumor like growths that do not respond to conventional treatments, have become chronic, keep weeping out fluids and are painful.

However, care should be taken while using this plant fas the sap is quite acrid. If it goes in the eyes, it damages the cornea and could even lead to blindness

Traditional uses:

  1. The flower tops of Calotropis can be eaten, though care should be taken to ensure that the sap is not consumed.

  2. The flower tops can also be dried and powdered. 1/4th teaspoon of the said powder can be taken along with honey by asthma patients.

  3. For benign tumors, swellings and painful abscessess, the leaf of calotropis is warmed on an iron skillet after applying some castor oil and then wrapped around the affected area. This helps decrease the inflammation and also helps reduce chronic swelling over a period of a few days.

  4. For severe stomach ache and recurrent colic: Mustard oil or castor oil can be applied on a leaf which can then be warmed on a skillet and later placed on the abdomen to reduce stomach cramps and spasms.

  5. Leaves warmed in a similar fashion can also be used for aching joints - especially for those suffering from rheumatism and arthritis.

This plants contribution to the ecosystem:

Calotropis might be considered a weed by many of us, but it plays a wonderful host to the larvae of the Tirumala limniace commonly known as the Blue tiger butterfly. If you have seen these beauties flying around- Thank Calotropis !

Note: The relationship of a plant with other life forms is also something that we need to pay attention to. When we uproot plants considering them as weeds, we could also impact the lives of Bugs, Bees, Insects, Larvae, Birds etc that are dependent on the particular weed. All these elements of an ecosystem directly or indirectly affect us too.

Butterflies and bees play an important role in pollination, the microorganisms that grow on the plants could contribute to our own Microbiome and there are endless ways in which we are connected to the weed which we might consider useless ( Just because we are not able to see a direct use or because we percieve a threat to our so called important crops)

This tunnel vision or horse with blinders outlook is what is causing us to lose much more than what we gain, when we go about our inconsiderate and selfish way of living...

Disclaimer: For the untrained eye, many plants appear similar. Do not attempt to harvest and use herbs until and unless you are familiar with herb identification and usage.

If you want to use any of the herbs mentioned on these blogs, please do so under the guidance of a doctor or a holistic practitioner. You can also write to us at for usage information specific to your issue.


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