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Plant Name:  Bridelia retusa (L.) A. Juss.            


                Marathi:            Asand, Asana 

                Hindi:                Kaji           

                English:            Spinous Kino Tree          

                Jawhar:            Asana  



Identification guide  


A medium to large deciduous tree. Young stems often with stout blunt thorns.


Leaves are rigid leathery with straight parallel lateral veins and strong spines on the bark of young stems. It is a drought hardy species, produces root-suckers and a good coppicer. Leaf-blade is elliptic-oblong to elliptic-oblanceolate, 10-20 x 4-10 cm, tip somewhat pointed, sometimes blunt, base is rounded or roundly wedge-shaped, margin entire or wavy, thinly leathery, lateral nerves 15-20 pairs.


Fruit is globose, fleshy sweetish drupe, about the size of a pea, purple-black, seated on a hard enlarged calyx. 1 or 2 seeds with fairly thick bony shells.


Flowers are arranged in axillary fascicles and also in fascicles on leafless branches appearing as spikes. The fascicles are either unisexual or bisexual; axes densely puberulous; bracts small, acute; flowers stalked.


Habit / Habitat

"It is a tree which is quite common in forests and open land, reported from dry evergreen or deciduous forests with sandy-loamy soil, granite or basalt derived sandy soil, and limestone, at elevations from 50 - 600 metres, occasionally to 1,400 metres."             



1) Distributed throughout India, in hotter parts , specifically, whole Maharashtra: Karnataka, Kerala and Tamil Nadu.

2) Global Distribution: It is found in Bangladesh, Nepal, Sri Lanka, southern China, Indochina, and Sumatra.         


Edible parts    

World wide use:                                    Fruits

Used by tribal community in Jawhar:     Fruits, extracts of leaf and barks for medicinal purpose.


Method  of consumption

                Jawhar tribal      Directly consumed


Medicinal use

Jawhar: Leaf/ bark extract used for ear ache. It is also effective on stomach ache.

  1. It has been reported that, the women of the Paliyan tribes in Tirunelveli district of Tamil Nadu in India consume a bark extract of the B. retusa to cure menorrhagia.
  2. The plant is pungent, bitter, heating; useful in lumbago and hemiplegia.
  3. The bark is good for the removal of urinary concretions.
  4. It is also used as a liniment with sesame oil in rheumatism."


Nutritional and medicinal information:


Pharmaceutical significance:

  1. It has been tested for the antimicrobial activity against 10 human pathogens bacteria and 4 fungal strains. It was reported that chloroform – methanol (1 : 1) fraction was effective against the E. coli, K. pneumoniae and P. aeruginosa. These pathogens are responsible for the pathogenesis of urinary tract infection.
  2. The methanol extract of Bridelia retusa stem bark (50–1.5625 mg/ml) and its isolated luteoforol (2–0.25 mg/ml) showed concentration-dependent inhibiting activity against all 10 tested bacteria."


Harvesting and preserving   

Fruits can be directly harvested.              

Leaf and bark extracts could be stored.

Propagation and Storage      

Season of collection:

Flowering:            May-August.

Fruiting:                July - September

How to grow it?  

Seed: it takes a year for the seedlings to reach 15 cm in height. The seedlings benefit from shade when young. Each fruit contains one or two rather bony seeds and the viability is rather short, about six months. Fresh seed has a germination percentage of about 75. The pulp should be removed from the seeds before they are sown, and they should be soaked in cold water for 24 hours.

Apart from seedlings, it is also possible to raise B. retusa from hardwood cuttings 20-30 cm long and 1 cm thick, taken in the dormant season between December and January.

Method of storage: Seeds


Other uses       

  1. The tree apart from its usage as a medicine and food, also act as a source of good quality wood.
  2. The leaves are used as cattle-fodder.



Kingdom:              Plantae

Division:               Spermatophyta

Sub-division:        Angiospermae

Class:                     Diocotyledonae

Sub-Class:            Apetalae

Series:                   Unisexuales

Family:                 Euphorbiaceae

Genus:                  ‎Bridelia

Species:                retusa















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