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Manihot esculenta Crantz

Synonyms:
Janipha manihot (L.) Kunth
Jatropha dulcis J. F. Gmel.
Jatropha manihot L.
Manihot aipi Pohl
Manihot dulcis (J. F. Gmel.) Pax
Manihot leptopoda (Mull. Arg.) D. J. Rogers & Appan
Manihot manihot (L.) Cockerell
Manihot melanobasis Mull. Arg.
Manihot utilissima Pohl.

Group: Dicot
Family: Euphorbiaceae - Spurge family
Duration: Perennial
Growth Habit: Shrub

Bangla/Vernacular Name: Shimal alu.

Tribal Name: Thing bazik, Thingba (Bawm), Seme alu (Chakma), Akuho (Khumi), Asa Mrwak, Lapai baou (Marma), Yam-wi (Murang), Kapela alu (Tanchangya), Tha Bucchuk (Tripura).

English Name: Cassava, Tapioca.

Description of the Plant:

A tall, herbaceous plant with cluster of tuberous roots. Leaves, deeply 3-7 parted; lobes lanceolate, acuminate. Flowers in paniculate racemes, males usually above and female below.Capsule of three 2-valved cocci.

Chemical Constituents:

Plant contains cyanogenetic glucoside; latex contains essential oil 0.13%, saponins 1.14%, glucoside 1.66%, and dyes 3.8%; essential oil contains sulphur in organic combination (Chopra et al., 1992). a- and ß- carotenes and hydroxylcarotenes have also been isolated from the plant. Linamarin has been isolated from tubers. Leaves contain rutin, quercetin, chlorogenic acid esters of p-coumaric, caffeic, ferulic and sinapic acids, glycosides of caffeic and ferulic acids, luteolin glycosides, amentoflavone and podocarpusflavone A. Leaves and roots also contain Fe, Cu, Zn and Mn (Rastogi & Mehrotra, 1990 & 93).

Manihot esculenta Crantz

Manihot esculenta Crantz

Mode of Uses:

  • Paste prepared from the tuber by boiling in water and used as curry. Chutney is prepared from the leaves boiled in water and mixed with chili (Bawm).
  • Boiled tuber is used as one of the ingredients to prepare local beer (Khumi).
  • Water extract of the root is used for treating jaundice. The root is also given in the form of pills (Marma).
  • Tuber is eaten. Prickle is prepared from boiled leaf (Murang).
  • The leaves are cooked as leafy vegetable. Boiled tubers are eaten with or without curcuma and tuber also used in curries (Bawm,Chakma, Marma and Tripura).

Distribution:

Cultivated by the tribal peoples in Chittagong, Chittagong Hill Tracts, Cox's Bazar, Madhupur and other tribal areas.

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