Home >> Plants Profile: Part-C >> Cajanus cajan (L.) Millsp.

Cajanus cajan (L.) Millsp.

Cajanus bicolor DC.
Cajanus flavus DC.
Cajanus indicus Spreng.
Cytisus cajan L.

Duration: Perennial
Family: Fabaceae - Pea family
Group: Dicot
Growth Habit: Shrub

Bangla/Vernacular Name: Arhar, Arhardal, Tur, Aral.

Tribal Name: Flaying (Murang), Hayanko (Rakhaing).

English Name: Pigeon Pea, Red Gram, Congo Pea.

Description of Plant:

An erect bushy shrub up to 3 m high. Leaves trifoliate, leaflets oblong-lanceolate, densely silky beneath. Flowers yellow, in loose corymbose racemes or forming a terminal panicle; Corolla three times the calyx; standard yellow or veined with red. Pod oblong, finely downy.

Chemical Constituents:

Leaves contain phytoalexins, sterols, triterpens and other lipidic constituents. Roots contain antifungal isoflavone, cajanone, cajaflavone, methyl cajanone, cajaisoflavone, an isoflavone glucosides, genistein, an anthraquinone derivative, cajaquinone, sitosterol and its glucosides, lupeol and amyrins. Cajaquinone, an anthraquinone derivative have also been isolated form the roots. Tender red pods contain carbohydrates, protein, fats, vitamins A, B and C, carotene, minerals and amino acids. Constituents of the seeds are similar to those of the pods and they are rich sources of vitamin B6, folic acid, tocopherol, minerals, amino acids and plant acids. They also contain enzymes and isoflavones. Essential oil from plant contains a-, ß-and ?-selinenes, copaene and a mixture of eudesmols (Ghani, 2003).

Cajanus cajan (L.) Millsp.

Cajanus cajan (L.) Millsp.

Mode of Uses:

  • Fresh pod is cooked as vegetables. Fried seeds are eaten (Khumi).
  • Leaf and bark extract is taken to treat jaundice. Leaves are boiled in water and used to take bath to relive from jaundice and itches. Fruit (pods) and flower is eaten as vegetable (Murang).
  • Extract prepared from leaf, taken three to four tea spoonfuls twice or thrice until cured in gout. Leaf extract is taken as much as patient can twice daily for 21 days. Taken of oil, salt, turmeric & in addition sleeping at noon is prohibited in jaundice. Ash prepared from whole plant mixed with cold water and salt and this juice is taken two tea spoonfuls twice daily until cured in vomiting and stomachache (Rakhaing).
  • Pods are cooked and then eaten. Seeds are eaten like pulses and also after roasted (Chakma, Tripura).


Cultivated throughout Bangladesh.

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