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Commelina benghalensis


Commelina pyrrhoblepharis, Commelina cucullata

Vernacular Names:


Tropical Spiderwort, Benghal Dayflower, Blue Commelina, Venus’ Bath

Indonesia Brambangan
Thailand Phak plaap
Laos Nya Kabpi Hyai
Vietnam Dau-rieu, Trai An
Philippines Kabilao Dagko (Bisaya); Kabilau, Sabilau, Sambilau (Ilocano); Kabilao, Sabilau (Ilongo); Bias-bias (Pampango); Alikbangon, Likbangan, Ulikbangon (Tagalog)
India Kankaua, Kanteri, Kanvo, Kankavwa, Kannateva, Kana (Hindi); Kanavachai (Tamil); Vennadavkura (Telagu); Kannaguharvi (Tamil); Buchna, Jeha-bhoi, Kanchara, Kanna-Manna
Bangladesh Dholpata, Kanaibashi, Kanai Bashi, Kanchira
Nepal Ban Kane, Kane Jhar (Nepali); Kanema (Raute); Kaniya (Tharu); Makai Mbendo (Tamang)
French Commeline, Commeline
Portuguese Trapoeraba
Swahili Kongwa, Kafula, Mpovupovu
Sudah Rekondo (Azande); Awowa (Moru) [1][2][3][4][5]

GeneralEthopia Information


Commelina banghalensis is a member of the Commelinaceae family. It is an annual or a perennial, low creeping plant, or ascending to 30cm hign, hairy or smooth. The leaves are elliptic-ovate, hairy, measuring 2.5 -7.5cm long, 1.25-2.5cm wide with parallel veins. The base is narrowed into a petiole of 0.6cm long fringed with short and long red hairs. The spathes 1-3, funnel-shaped, measure 1.25cm long, shorely pedunculate. They are closed down the upper side to the point of attachment to the stalk. The flowers 2-4 per spathes, the first one long-pedunculed, the otheres being sessile. The pale reduced flowers often produced on underground stems. The fruits are 3-locular capsule, 5-seeded. The seeds are black in colour with a wrinkled surface, sometimes appearing sugar-coated, measuring 2mm long.[1]

Plant Part Used

Leaves, roots and whole plant [2] [3] [5]

Chemical Constituents

n-octacosanol, n-triacontanol, n-dotriacontanol, stigmasterol, beta-sitosterol and campesterol. [6]

Traditional Used:

C. benghalensis is considered a bitter, emolient, demulcent, refrigerant, laxative.

Gastrointestinal Diseases

The Nepalese extracted juice from the roots of C. benghalensis is given in cases of indigestion.[5]In southern Africa they made use of the decoction of the root to relieve stomach disorder. In Tanzania a solution made from pounded leaves soaked in warm water is used to treat diarrhoea.[3] The whole plant is a useful laxative.[2]

Eye Diseases

The sap of the leaves and stems is good for ophthalmia and is used by the people of East Africa. The people of Zanzibar on the other had made used of the liquid found in the flowering spathe to treat eye complains.[3]

Infective Diseases

The whole plant is useful in sores, infant oral thrush and even leprosy. In southern Nigeria the plant is made into a poultice and applied on sores of the feet.[2] In India it is used with great benefit in the treatment of Leprosy.[3]

Other uses

Leaves are used in fever, scorpion sting and wounds. The roots treat liver complaints, fever.[2] In Uganda and southern Africa the plant is used to counter fertility in women.[3]

Pre-Clinical Data


No documentation


All above ground parts are astringent and contains hydrocyanic acid.[3]

Clinical Data

Clinical Trials

No documentation

Adverse Effects in Human:

No documentation

Used in Certain Conditions

Pregnancy / Breastfeeding

No documentation

Age Limitations

Neonates / Adolescents

No documentation  


No documentation

Chronic Disease Conditions

No documentation


Interactions with drugs

No documentation

Interactions with Other Herbs / Herbal Constituents

No documentation



No documentation

Case Reports

No documentation

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  1) Botanical Info


  1. Marita Ignacio Galinato, Keith Moody, Colin M. Piggin, Upland rice weeds of south and southeast Asia International Rice Research Institute Los Banos 1999 pg. 30
  2. H. Panda Medicinal Plants Cultivation & Their Uses Asia Pacific Business Press Inc. Delhi 2000 pg. 523
  3. G. J. H. Grubben Plant Resources of Tropical Africa 2 – Vegetables PROTA Foundation/ Backhuys Publishers, Wageningen 2004 pg. 212
  4. Merrill: Loureiro’s “Flora Cochinchinensis” in Transactions, American Philosophical Society (vol. 24, Part 2, 1935-June) American Philosophical Society Philadelphia 1929 pg. 101
  5. N. P. Manandhar, Sanjay Manandhar  Plants and people of Nepal Timber Press Inc. Portland 2002 pg. 167
  6. C. P. Khare Indian Medicinal Plants: An Illustrated Dictionary Springer-Verlag Berlin 2007 pg. 168

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