Facts and benefits of Poison Lily

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Poison bulb or Poison lily Quick Facts
Name: Poison bulb or Poison lily
Scientific Name: Crinum asiaticum
Origin Indian Ocean islands, East Asia, tropical Asia, Australia and Pacific islands
Colors Green or light green
Shapes Oblate irregularly globose capsule, 2.5-6.5 cm across, with one or a few large green seeds
Taste Sweet, pungent
Health benefits Good for boils, contusions, earache, edema, fever, fractures, gastrointestinal complaints, hernia, mumps, rheumatism, tonsillitis, urinary difficulties and vomiting
Crinum asiaticum, commonly known as poison bulb, giant crinum lily or spider lily, is a plant species widely planted in many warmer regions as an ornamental plant. It is a tender perennial bulb in the Liliaceae (Lily family). The plant is native to Indian Ocean islands, East Asia, tropical Asia, Australia and Pacific islands. It is regarded as naturalized in Mexico, the West Indies, Florida, Louisiana, numerous Pacific islands, Madagascar and the Chagos Archipelago. The plant is known as Grand Crinum Lily, Poison Bulb, Spider Lily, Seashore Lily, Bakung, Crinum Lily, Asiatic Poison Lily, Seashore Crinum, Bawang Hutan, Giant Crinum, White Crinum, Grand Crinum, Giant Crinum, Nagdaman, Sukhdarshan and Sudarshan in English, naagadamani in Ayurveda, bakong in Malaysia, and morabau in Papua New Guinea.

Genus name Crinum originates from the Greek word krinon which means white lily, referring to the white or whitish flowers which most species produce. Specific epithet asiaticum is in reference to the plant being native to Asia. The plant is harvested from the wild for local medicinal use. It is commonly cultivated as an ornamental plant in tropical areas, being valued especially for its showy flowers. It is a bulb-forming perennial producing an umbel of large, showy flowers that are prized by gardeners. All parts of the plant are however poisonous if ingested. Some reports specify exposure to the sap may cause skin irritation.

Poison Lily Facts

Name Poison lily
Scientific Name Crinum asiaticum
Native Indian Ocean islands, East Asia, tropical Asia, Australia and Pacific islands. It is regarded as naturalized in Mexico, the West Indies, Florida, Louisiana, numerous Pacific islands, Madagascar and the Chagos Archipelago
Common Names Nagdaman, Sukhdarshan, Sudarshan, Grand Crinum Lily, Poison Bulb, Spider Lily, Seashore Lily, Bakung, Crinum Lily, Asiatic Poison Lily, Seashore Crinum, Bawang Hutan, Giant Crinum, White Crinum, Grand Crinum, Giant Crinum
Name in Other Languages Arabic: Haliyaon
Assamese: Bon-naharu (বন নহৰু), bon nohoru, dheki phul (ঢেকি ফুল), jajang (জজং), konari (কনাৰী), nagdamini (নাগদামিনী), sukhdarsan (সুখদৰ্শন)
Bengali: Sookhdursun, Bara Kanur, , Sukhadarshana (সুখদর্শন),  Banakanur, baro kanur (বড়ো কানুর), koba rasun (কোবা রসুন), nagdala (নাগদল), nagdamini (নাগদামিনী), sudarsan (সুদর্শন), sukhadarshana (সুখদর্শন)
Bulgarian: aziat·ski krinum  (азиатски кринум)
Burmese: Koyangi, g mone ko ran kyee (ဂမုန်းကိုယ်ရံကြီး)
Ceylon: Vishamungil
Chamorro: Piga-palayi
Chinese: Wen shu lan (文殊兰),Quen chou lan, Wénzhū lán (文珠蘭)
Chuukese: Giob, kiiyopw, kiop, kiopw, kiopw pwuniwal, kiyopw, mwootiw, püllai, pullai, siipw
Cohin: Mansylan
Czech: Křín asijský
English: Asiatic poisonbulb, crinum, false spider lily, giant crinum lily, grand crinum, poisonbulb, spider lily, white spider lily, crinum lily, poison lily, swamp lily, Antidote Lily, cape lily flowers, Crinum lily
Fijian: Lautalotalo, viavia
Finnish: Aasiankriinumi
German: Weiße Hakenlilie, Asiatische Hakenlilie
Gujarati: Nagdowan, Nagadamani, Nagrikanda, nagdamani (નાગદમની), sukhdarshan (સુખદર્શન)
Hindi: Sudharshan (सुदर्शन), Nagadamani (नागदामिनी), Shukadarsana, Chindar, Pindar, Badakanvar, Chintaara
I-Kiribati: Te kiebu, te kiepu, te ruru, te ruru n aine
Indonesian: Bakong, bakung, kajang-kajang, fete-fete
Japanese: Taiwan-hamaomoto, hamawomoto (ハマオモト), hamayū (ハマユウ),
Kannada: Naagdaali (ನಾಗದಾಳಿ), vishabiduru (ವಿಷಬಿದುರು), vishamunguli (ವಿಷಮುಂಗುಲಿ)
Kwaraae: Afamanu, arakao
Konkani: Kartmari, Kirathi Maari, nagdavan (नागदवण)
Korean: Munjulan (문주란)
Lakhimpur: Kaneripat
Malay: Pokok Bakung
Malayalam: Pulattali, Puzhatthali, visamoolam, veluttapolatali (വെളുത്തപോളതാളി)
Malaysia: Bakong, bawang hutan
Mangarevan: Riri
Marathi: Gadambi Kanda, bhuishirad (भुईशिरड), nagadamani (नागदमनी), nagadavana (नागदवण)
Marshallese: Kieb, kiebe, kiep, kiup
Nauruan: Dagibu, dagiebu
Nepali: Haade Phool (हाडे फूल)
Niuean: Lili, talotalo
Odia: Arisa (ଆରିସା), dhinkiadala (ଢିଙ୍କିଆ ଦଳ), nagadamani (ନାଗଦମନୀ), Arsa, Hatikanda
Palauan: Bisecherad ra ngebard
Papua New Guinea: Morabau, didil, pokaan
Persian: Marchobia, سوسن عنکبوتی
Philippines: Bakong, agabahan, biliba
Pingelapan: Khepw, kiep
Pohnpeian: Kiepw
Portuguese: Crino-branco, crino, lírio-do-Cabo
Russian: Krinum aziatskiy (Кринум азиатский)
Samoan: Lau talotalo
Sanskrit: Sudarshana, sudarshan, vishamandala, nagadamani, somavalli, cakrangi, madhuparnila, nagadamani (नागदमनी), sudarsana (सुदर्शन), vishamandala (विषमण्डल)
Sinhalese: Tobalo
Spanish: amancay, lirio de cinta
Swedish: Strandkrinum
Tahitian: Eriri
Tamil: Visamumgil (விஷமூங்கில்), Vishapungila, nari-venkayam (நரிவெங்காயம்), peru-narivenkayam (பெருநரிவெங்காயம்), visa-munkil (விஷமூங்கில்)
Telugu: Kesar chettu, lakshminarayana chettu, Ceṅgalva (చెంగల్వ), Vishamugali, chengaluva (చెంగలువ), kesarchettu (కేసరచెట్టు), lakshminarayana chettu (లక్ష్మీనారాయణచెట్టు), visha-mungali (విషమంగలి)
Thailand: Phlapphueng (พลับพลึง), lilua
Tokelauan: Lau talotalo
Tongan: Sāmoa, talotalo, tolotalo
Tuamotuan: Riri
Tulu: Isamungili  (ಇಸಮುಂಗಿಲಿ)
Tuvaluan: Talotalo, tapua, te luhe
Ulithian: Giab, hiop
Urdu: Nagdaun, sukhdarshan
Vietnam: Náng hoa trắng, tỏi voi, lá náng, Náng
Wallisian: Talotalo
Woleaian: Giop, giyob
Yapese: Giobwutet, giop, guyab
Plant Growth Habit Erect, herbaceous, terrestrial,  perennial, ornamental, bulbous plant
Growing Climates Sandy beaches, other coastal areas, cliff and steep slopes, borders of coastal forests, mangrove forests and at low altitudes
Soil Prefers a deep, well-drained but moisture-retentive fertile soil that is rich in organic matter
Plant Size 5 feet (1.5 m) tall and a greater spread of about 7 feet (2 m)
Root Fibrous, adventitious root system
Stem Contracted, rounded, solid
Leaf Simple, narrowly lanceolate, acuminate, in a dense rosette atop the stem, blade is sessile, linear-lanceolate, usually 60-130 cm long and 10-15 cm wide, thick and somewhat fleshy
Flowering season June to August
Flower Flowers more or less continuously through the year; flowers 20 to 30 or more, fragrant, borne in an umbel atop a long, thick stalk and enclosed within two large bracts.  Corolla with fused tepals, funnel-shaped, the tube above the ovary 8-12 cm long, 4-7 mm in diameter, greenish, the limb of six spreading segments 6-12 x 0.7-1.5 cm, usually white, with six long, protruding stamens with red filaments
Fruit Shape & Size Oblate irregularly globose capsule, 2.5-6.5 cm across, with one or a few large green seeds
Fruit Color Green – Light Green
Seed Seeds are 2-4.5 cm wide, large and exotesta spongy.
Propagation By  seed or by division
Taste Sweet, pungent
Plant Parts Used Leaves, roots, bark, fruit, seeds, flowers
Other Facts
  • This species accumulates selenium, and could potentially be used to cleanse contaminated soil.

Plant Description

Poison lily or poison bulb is an erect, herbaceous, terrestrial, perennial, ornamental, bulbous plant with a flowering stalk in the center of the plant. The plant normally grows about 5 feet (1.5 m) tall and a greater spread of about 7 feet (2 m) from an underground bulb that can be 5 – 15cm in diameter. The plant is found growing in sandy beaches, other coastal areas, cliff and steep slopes, borders of coastal forests, mangrove forests and at low altitudes. The plant prefers a deep, well-drained but moisture-retentive fertile soil that is rich in organic matter. The plant has fibrous, adventitious root system and contracted, rounded and solid stem.

Leaves

Stalk less leaves are simple, narrowly lanceolate, acuminate, in a dense rosette atop the stem, blade is sessile, linear-lanceolate, usually 60-130 cm long and 10-15 cm wide, thick and somewhat fleshy, stalkless parallel veined with many cross veins and is light green colored. Leaves have a hairy texture.

Foliage Retention           Evergreen
Mature Foliage Color(s)               Green – Light Green
Mature Foliage Texture(s)          Smooth
Foliar Type         Simple / Unifoliate
Foliar Arrangement Along Stem               Rosulate / Rosette
Foliar Attachment to Stem Sessile
Foliar Shape(s) Non-Palm Foliage (Lanceolate)
Foliar Venation                Parallel
Foliar Margin     Entire, Entire – Wavy / Undulate
Foliar Apex- Tip Acute
Foliar Base Truncate / Square
Leaf Area Index (LAI) for Green Plot Ratio           3.5 (Shrub & Groundcover – Monocot)

 

Flower

The inflorescence is umbel that has 10-24 flowers, multiple petals and aromatic. Flower stem is erect, as long as the leaf, solid. Spathe is lanceolate, membranous, 6–10 cm. Bractlet is liner, 3–7 cm. Perianth tube slender and straight, green white, 7–10 cm, diameter 1.5–2 mm. Corolla is spider-like shaped, white, linear, revolute, attenuate, 4.5–9 cm long and 6–9 mm wide. Corolla lobes 6. Pedicel is 0.5-2.5 cm long. Stamens are reddish colored. Filaments are 4–5 cm long. Anthers are liner, attenuate, ca. 1.5 cm long or more. Ovary is fusiform, up to 2 cm long. Flowering normally takes place in between June to August. Flowers are fragrant at night.

Flower & Plant Sexuality Bisexual Flowers
Flower Color(s)                White
Flower Grouping             Cluster / Inflorescence
Flower Location               Terminal
Flower Symmetry            Radial
Individual Flower Shape              Tubular
Flower Size – Width        20 cm
Inflorescence Type Umbel

 

Fruit

Fertile flowers are followed by oblate irregularly globose capsule, 2.5-6.5 cm across, with one or a few large green seeds. Seeds are 2-4.5 cm wide, large and exotesta spongy.

Mature Fruit Color(s) – Angiosperms and Gymnosperms  Green – Light Green
Mature Fruit Texture(s)                Glossy / Shiny
Fruit Classification          Simple Fruit
Fruit Type           Fleshy Fruit

 

Traditional uses and benefits of Poison lily

  • Leaves are boiled and used as a bath, or the juice applied as a thick liquid to treat edema.
  • Leaves are wilted over hot charcoal and wrapped around the knees for swollen knees, or placed on the back for about one hour for backaches.
  • Leaf and bulb are used to neutralize poisons and regulate flatulence, phlegm, and urine.
  • Bulb is ground to make a paste for reducing the heat from swellings or for weeping sores (this paste, however, causes some itching).
  • The bulb consists of alkaloids, notably lycorine and crinamine.
  • Poultice made from the heated, pounded, fresh bulb is used to relieve osteodynia and rheumatism.
  • Juice of the fresh bulb is used as an emetic, whilst it is also instilled in the ear to treat Otis.
  • Poultice of the heated, pounded, fresh leaves is used to treat contusions, sprains, closed fractures, luxation etc.
  • Decoction of the dried leaves is used as a wash in the treatment of hemorrhoids.
  • Leaves are applied on swellings and the roots are given to ease childbirth in Papua New Guinea.
  • The hair like threads from the stem is used to poultice cuts.
  • Plant is used to treat infections of the breast and wounds in Fiji.
  • The crushed leaves are used to wash piles.
  • Mixed with honey, they are applied to wounds and abscesses.
  • Leaves and bulbs can be used to induce vomiting, because they consists of the alkaloid lycorine.
  • In ethno-medicine, it is used to relieve anguish from a plethora of ailment conditions such as boils, contusions, earache, edema, fever, fractures, gastrointestinal complaints, hernia, mumps, rheumatism, tonsillitis, urinary difficulties and vomiting, amongst others.
  • The plant or plant part is used for gastrointestinal disorders, skin diseases, fever, earache, boils, tonsillitis, mumps, hernia, rheumatism, urinary troubles, bone fracture, edema, and also as an antidote to poison.
  • Folk herbalists of the Tipuri tribe in Tripura use the bulbs of the plant to treat tonsillitis.
  • The Gonds of Andhra Pradesh consume the roasted bulbs to kill worms in the stomach and also as an aphrodisiac.
  • In Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh the bulbs are roasted and eaten to cure rheumatism and piles.
  • It has been used in Thai traditional medicine to relieve inflammatory symptoms and treat osteoarthritis.
  • Leaf is used to treat injurious, inflamed joints, and ankle pain and for postpartum care in Thai traditional medicine.
  • It has a considerable medicinal reputation as a potent folk medicine in the treatment of injury and inflamed joints in Southeast Asian countries.
  • The plant has been used for carbuncles and cancer.
  • Oiled and heated leaves are useful to treat wounds by poisoned arrows, bites and stings in Indonesia.
  • Poultices of the leaves are applied to swellings, swollen joints, lumbago, and pains and in cases of headache and fever in Malaysia.
  • The latex from the leaves is applied to cuts in Karkar Island and in Simbu, Papua New Guinea.
  • In the Trobriands, Papua New Guinea, the stem fibers are used to stop bleeding and in New Ireland, the milky sap from the stem is used for stone-fish wounds.
  • Juice obtained from bulb is ingested regularly for 2 months to treat gonorrhea in Papua New Guinea.
  • Cut root is cooked in a banana leaf, then cooled and placed on an aching tooth in a Finschhafen area village, Papua New Guinea.
  • Roots are used in New Caledonia, Indonesia, and Malaysia in a poultice for wounds, ulcers and swellings.
  • Preparation of the root is given to aid childbirth and for postpartum hemorrhage.
  • Leaves are heated and applied to back aches in Micronesia.
  • Leaves are also used for permanent retraction of the testes.
  • In Dinajpur district, Bangladesh, leaf juice and fruit is orally taken on an empty stomach thrice daily for 14 days as treatment for acidity and dysentery.
  • The local people of Haryana, India use the bulb of the plant as a laxative and for urinary troubles.
  • Leaves are squeezed in water and the resulting solution is taken for indigestion in Vanuatu.

  • The plant is used for ear, nose and throat diseases in North Gujarat, India.
  • The folk medicinal practitioners of villages in Bangladesh use tubers of the plant along with roots of Ocimum sanctum and black peppers to treat menstrual pain.
  • Folk medicinal practitioners of Rajshahi district, Bangladesh use the plant to treat chest diseases and vomiting tendency, where crushed roots of the plant are mixed with ginger and fruits of Piper nigrum and massaged on the chest.
  • A folk medicinal practitioner in Bangladesh supposedly uses roots of the plant to treat coughs, mucus and fever.
  • The Chakma community of Bangladesh uses stems of the plant to treat jaundice.
  • Juice is extracted from fresh bulbs and following sun drying is rubbed with soft cotton on areas of tonsillitis.
  • The Tripura tribe of Bangladesh uses leaf juice mixed with oil obtained from seeds of Ricinus communis to treat swelling of fingers or toes.
  • The plant is used by folk medicinal practitioners to treat hernia in Bangladesh.
  • The Temuan villagers in Malaysia topically apply heated leaves to bone fractured area.

Precautions

  • The entire plant of poison bulb is toxic, especially the bulb.
  • The sap can cause skin irritation.
  • The whole plant consists of a variety of alkaloids such as lycorine and tazettine.
  • When eaten by mistake, it can cause vomiting, abdominal pain, severe diarrhea after constipation, irregular breathing, rapid pulse, rising body temperature, etc.; a great deal of misuse can cause nervous system paralysis and death.

References:

https://www.itis.gov/servlet/SingleRpt/SingleRpt?search_topic=TSN&search_value=182711#null

http://www.hear.org/pier/species/crinum_asiaticum.htm

https://pfaf.org/User/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Crinum+asiaticum

http://ngp.parc.gov.pk/gringlobal/taxon/taxonomydetail?id=12215

https://gd.eppo.int/taxon/KRMAS

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Crinum_asiaticum

http://www.theplantlist.org/tpl1.1/record/kew-303325

https://indiabiodiversity.org/species/show/244445

https://www.efloraofgandhinagar.in/herb/crinum-asiaticum

https://uses.plantnet-project.org/en/Crinum_asiaticum_(PROSEA)

http://tropical.theferns.info/viewtropical.php?id=Crinum+asiaticum

http://www.flowersofindia.net/catalog/slides/Grand%20Crinum%20Lily.html

https://plants.usda.gov/home/plantProfile?symbol=CRAS6

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