Marathi Panchangas, make mention of a tree in association with every nakshatra. In his work Jyotisha, Das System der Indischen Astrologie Dr. Türstig quotes from these Panchangas, which he consulted in Skolapur in 1980. Apart from mentioning the name, the author also provides a short description of the tree, along with some information about its medical use in Ayurveda. If these trees have been assigned to the 27 nakshatras by the Vedic Rishis, than it will be worthwhile for us to know which tree belongs to our Janma nakshatra and to have some idea about its medicinal values or other applications. What follows is a translation of the indications given by Dr. Türstig (13, p.16 etc.)
This 12-15 m high tree grows in the moist rain
forests. It has greenish-white flowers (in March-April) and fruits that resemble
an orange, both in size and colour. From it is derived strychnine, which is
one of the most important medicinal products. The bark is used against cholera,
the root against intermittent fever, the leaves are useful in the treating of
wounds, and its seeds in treating rat bites.
This 12-15 m high tree grows in shadowy areas
of the rain forest. Its flowers are yellow with pink stripes (in April-June)
and its brown fruit ripen in February-March. Its bark is used as a medicine
for lameness, its ash is used against gonorrhea, its leaves against swellings,
its blossoms are good appetizers. Its fruits are helpful in case of wounds and
its seeds in case of stomach ulcers.
This evergreen 15-18 m high tree grows along
rivulets and streets. Its fruits ripen usually from March till July. Its roots
are used as a medicine against hydrophobia. Its fruits against diseases of the
blood, fatigue, lepra, bleeding nose, cough, etc. Its bark is helpful against
asthma, its leaves against bronchitis. The ripened fruits are eatable, in times
of shortage of food, the unripe ones are used together with rice for making
chapatis. The leaves are a good fodder for cattle especially for elephants.
This small evergreen tree grows in gardens, but is found also in nature. It has greenish-white flowers (February-March) and darkblue, cherry-like fruits (July-August). Its bark is used as a medicine against asthma, fatigue, diarrhea, and bronchitis. Its seeds are said to be helpful against syphilis.
This is a tree of about 12 m height, with pale-yellow
flowers (August-September) and brown fruits (December). Indian medicines produced
from it are Svalpakhadirvatika, which is used against tooth diseases and other
ailments. Another of its products is Khadirastaka, used against skin diseases
(no further comments are given)
This 24-30 m high bamboo tree grows on riverbanks
in the moist rain forests. It is used as a medicine against blood diseases,
bronchitis, asthma, acidity of the stomach, syphilis, etc.
This 25 m high holy fig tree is planted near
temples and villages. Its fruits ripen in May-July. This holy plant is also
used for healing purposes in case of heart diseases, stomach ulcers, etc. Also
it is used as aphrodisiac.
This tree has large white flowers (February-March)
which smell like roses and violets. Its eatable fruits are of the size of dove-eggs,
and contain large stones. It is regarded as a medicinal plant, and used against
fever, skin diseases, and headaches. Its flowers are especially used against
cough. Its bark, in combination with ginger. It drives out sweat.
This tree known under the name banyan tree (vata
in Sanskrit) is wild in the lower Himalayas and now found all over India. Its
milky juice and seeds or fruits are useful as external application to pains
and bruises, sores and ulcers, in rheumatism and lumbago, to the soles of the
feet when cracked or inflamed, and to the teeth and gums for toothache. The
juice of the fruits is useful in dysentery and diarrhoea. An infusion of the
bark (1 in 10) has specific properties in reducing blood sugar in diabetes,
dysentery, hemorrhagic fluxes, gonorrhoea, and in seminal weakness, and is a
powerful tonic. Leaves after they have turned yellow are given in decoction
with roasted rice as diaphoretic (three leaves are used for the decoction).
Slender twigs of the tree form a good toothbrush and its use strengthens gums
and teeth. (Nadkarni, p. 544)
This is a 12-15 m high tree with small pale-yellow
or green flowers (February-March). It is an important tree of the indian plains,
because it grows in salty, dry soil, where no other plants can flourish. Its
wood is used as a dying agent. Its root is used as a medicine against night
blindness. Its bark is used as aphrodisiac and appetizer, its leaves against
eye diseases and its flowers are used against skin diseases.
(no further comments)
This is a large tree-like bush whose white flowers
(JulySeptember) are used against mouth-tooth-eye-and ear diseases, as well
as against blood diseases, lepra and asthma. Its root is regarded as a medicine
against headache and rheumatism.
This tree grows in dry places, but is often
planted near temples. Its flowers (May) are greenish-white and its grey or yellow
fruits ripen in the raining season. Its roots are used against fevers and colic
pains. The flowers are helpful in quenching thirst and work against vomiting.
The ripe, sweet fruits are beneficial for the heart and the head, but not good
for lungs and chest. The skin of its fruit is supposed to help in cases of diarrhea.
This tree is dedicated to Lord Shiva.
This tree grows at river banks, up to the height
of 24 m. Its pale-yellow flowers appear in April-May. The juice of the fresh
leaves is used against ear pains and the bark has a strengthening effect in
case of heart problems.
(see comment under Ashlesha)
(see comment under Ashlesha)
(no further comments)
Panicum italicum or Italian millet is much esteemed
in some parts of India as a food article; but when taken as the sole food it
might produce diarrhea because of its heating properties. It acts as a diuretic
and astringent and is of use externally in rheumatism. It is a popular domestic
remedy for alleviating the pains of parturition. (Nadkarni, p. 897)
This is not a tree, but a creeper, who is used
all over India to produce baskets, etc.
This evergreen tree grows about 12-18 m high.
Its blossom period is November-January. Its long pumpkin-like and prickly fruits
(jack fruits) are very tasty (June-August). The young leaves are used against
This is a large tree-like bush with purple and
white flowers (February-July). It grows at dry places and it has large, green
fruits. Its juice is used against hemorrhoids. Its root against asthma and syphilis.
All parts of this plant, dried and taken together with milk, have a strengthening
This is a thorny tree with small yellow flowers
(February-May) and eatable fruits (May-August). Its wood is used as building
material and as fuel. It is also used as fodder for camels and goats.
This is a tree which grows up to 24 meters,
and has small yellow flowers (May-August) and small encapsulated fruits. It
sheds its leaves in February-March. Its light pinkish-brown wood serves as building
material, and its leaves are used as fodder.
This is the indian mango tree, which is also
used as medicinal plant. The smoke of its leaves are useful against neck pains.
This tree, up to 24 m high, has small white
flowers which smell like honey (March-May). Its yellow-brown fruits ripen in
the raining season. The tree is considered good for health when it is planted
around a village. It is supposed to protect the villagers against malaria. Practically
every part of the tree has some medical application. The oil from its seeds
is used in the production of soap.
This so called honey tree or butter
tree is one of the most important indian forest trees. It grows up to
15 m high, and has yellow-white, meaty flowers (March-April), which are raw
eatable and serve as food. The oil, that is won from its fruits is processed
into a kind of butter, but is also used as a medicine against skin diseases.