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Pakistan | Family List | Zygophyllaceae | Peganum

Peganum harmala Linn., Sp.Pl. 444. 1753. Boiss.,Fl.Orient. 1:917. 1867; Hook.f.,Fl.Brit.Ind. 1:486. 1872(in Rutaceae); Engler in Engler & Prantl, l.c.; Jafri, Fl. Kar. 185. 1966; Coode in Davis, Fl. Turk. 2:494. 1967; Tutin in Tutin et al., Fl.Europ. 2:205. 1968; Hadidi in Rech.f., Fl.Iran. 98:18. tabs. 14 & 15. 1972; in Tackholm, l.c. 300. 1974.

Vern.: Harmal, Ispand, Isband.

  • Peganum dauricum Pall.

    Perennial, 25-60 cm tall, corymbosely branched, glabrous herb. Leaves sessile,4-8 cm long, irregularly and pinnatisectly dissected into 3-5 cm long, 2-5 mm broad, linear-lanceolate or subelliptic, acute segments ;stipules setaceous, 1.5-2.5 mm long. Flowers white or yellowish white, c.2-2.5 cm across; pedicel 1.2 cm long, filiform. Sepals 5,linear, 10-15(-18)mm long, glabrous, acute, entire or rarely pinnatifid. Petals 5,oblong or oblong-elliptic, subequal, 10-14(-16) mm long,5-8 mm broad, obtuse. Stamens mostly 15, rarely less, filaments 4-5 mm long, anthers longer than filaments, c. 6 mm long, dorsifixed. Ovary with 8-10 mm long style, the upper 6 mm triangular or 3-keeled. Capsule 6-10 mm across, trigonous, depressed or retuse at the apex, with persistent style. Seeds blackish-brown, triangular, c. 2 mm long.

    Fl.Per.: April-October.

    Type: Herb.Linn. 621.1 and 621.2(LINN).

    Distribution: India, Tibet, Pakistan westwards to North Africa, Europe and Russia.

    Seed powder is used in asthma, colic and jaundice and as an anthelmintic against tapeworms and for reducing temperature in chronic malaria. Seeds are regarded as narcotic, hypotonic, antispasmodic, antiperiodic, emetic, alterative, lactagogue. Decoction of seeds is given in laryngitis. It increases the flow of milk and is stimulant and abortifacient. The smoke is considered antiseptic and wounds are fumigated by burning seeds and leaves. The seeds and root contain four alkaloids, harmaline, harmine, peganine and harmalol to the extent of 4%.


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