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Species:        Aconitum violaceum
Plant Profile:
Aconitum violaceum is a perennial herb found in the Himalayan belt. The plant has a distinctively conical root and both new and old roots grow attached to each other. The leaves are rounded 2-10 cm across, palmately cut to the base with the lobes cut into narrow segments 1-3 mm wide. The stem is solitary and erect stem and up to 10-30 cm long. The numerous flowers are arranged in a raceme and are blue in colour. The fruit is a bunch of 5 follicles, which are densely hairy. The herb normally grows between an altitudinal range of 3200-4800 m. The plant roots remain dormant in the winter from October-November to March. New shoots come off with the melting of snow in April-May. The vegetative phase continues till July and the plants start flowering in August. Seed setting takes place in September and the seeds reach physiological maturity by the end of September or early October. Tuberous roots of the plant are harvested by digging in the months of August-September, washed and dried for use in medicines.
Medicinal uses:
Parts used: Tuberous root
Disease cured and dosage:
  • Ethnomedicinal: It is an antidote against snake and scorpion bites and treats infectious fever. It is also useful in treating intestinal disorders and helps make inflammations subside. The dried roots are boiled and used as a cure for cough in small doses. The roots are rubbed and dissolved in nursing mothers’ milk to be administered to the infants suffering from severe diarrhoea, stomatitis and allied gastric complaints.
  • Ethnoveterinary: Data not sufficient
Ayurvedic properties and actions:
  • Guna (Qualities): Ruksha (dry), laghu (light)
  • Rasa (taste): Tikta (bittter), katu (pungent)
  • Vipaka (post digestive taste): Katu (pungent)
  • Virya (potency): Ushna (hot)
Therapeutic description:
  • Effect on humours: Alleviates pitta, kapha
  • Blood Vascular system: Used in the treatment of boils, blood disorders and inflammation.
  • Digestive system: Used to treat dyspepsia, abdominal colic, digestive upsets, dysentery and diarrhoea.
  • Temperature: Used as a cure for malaria and fever accompanied by diarrhea.
Drug preparation: To convert the plant into a drug, the roots are separated, washed in water, completely dried and ground into a fine powder. The medicine is in the form of a powder or pills.
  • The powder is free flowing and blackish brown in colour.
  • It can be stored in airtight and moisture free containers.
  • The powder has a shelf life of 6 months, while the pills can be kept for a year.
  • For external use, it can be locally applied to reduce inflammation in case of traumatic injury.
Note: Some Amchis chant mantras while administering the drug “Sanje mallya khenju, Manke kawa chu chukchik, Nat ki kalwa jam chukchik.” The mantra implies, “let there be no more dearth or medicines to fight away all the diseases in this mortal world.”


Family: Ranunculaceae
Common name: Mithi Patish , Dudhi Mohra, Dudhi Atees
Local name: Ponnnma-karpo, Yangtso, Dusi Lama, Zinba (Ladakh), Phonker (Spiti), Dudhia Atis (Joshimath), Bongkar-rigs-gryis-pa (Tibet), Prativisha (Hindi)
Ayurvedic name: Prativisha
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