Indian Name : Barbara, Vavari
Botanical Name : Acacia arabica
Family : Leguminosae - Mimosoideae
Parts Use : Bark or gum, Leaves, Resin, Root, Seed pods
A moderate sized, almost evergreen tree, usually up to 15 m
high. Leaves bipinnate with spinescent stipules. Flowers
golden yellow, fragrant, crowded in long stalked globose
Bark : Bark hard,
dark brown or black, deeply fissured transversely and
longitudinally; inner surface reddish brown,
longitudinally striated and fibrous, breaks with
difficulty and exhibits a fibrous fracture; taste
astringent. Transverse section of mature bark shows
15-25 layered, thin-walled, slightly flattened, mostly rectangular,
brown colored cork cells; a few lenticels formed by
rupturing of cork cells; secondary cortical cells ovate
to elongated; many tanniferous stone cells, variable in
shape and size, present in large group; secondary phloem
consists of sieve tubes, companion cells, fibres,
crystal fibres and phloem parenchyma; phloem fibres in
many groups and thick-walled; phloem tissues filled with
reddish and brown contents; crystal fibres thick-walled,
elongated, divided with reddish and brown contents;
crystal fibres thick-walled, elongated, divided by
transverse septa into segments, each contain a prismatic
crystal of calcium oxalate; meduallry rays uni to
multiseriate, run almost straight; ray cells elongated
to polygonal, 20-24 cells high and 2-5 cells wide
The tree thrives best on alluvial loam and black cotton
soils. Seeds collected from the litter of goats
germinate more freely and easily. In the dried districts,
it should be planted as a thick belt along all roads to
form a roadside avenue. Seed is gathered in April.
The leaves, the bark, the pods and the gum of
the tree have medicinal virtues. The pods help remove
catarrhal matter and phlegm from the bronchial tubes.
The gum allays any, irritation of the skin and soothes
the inflamed membranes of the pharynx, alimentary canal
and genito-urinary organs.
Purchase Advice : The Best time to buy this herb :
Best time to purchase is from January to
March every year.
Benefits of Babul :
The various parts of babul tree are useful in diarrhea
of ordinary intensity. A mixture of equal parts of the
tender leaves with white and black cumin seeds (zeera)
can be administered in doses of 12 grams, thrice daily.
An infusion made of the bark of the tree may also be
taken thrice daily for the same purpose. The gum, used
either in decoction or in syrup, is an effective
medicine for diarrhea.
Teeth Disorders :
Chewing of fresh bark of this tree daily, helps
strengthen loose teeth and arrest any bleeding from the
gums. Dirty teeth can be cleaned effectively by brushing
them with a powder in which 60 grams of charcoal of
babul wood, 24 grams of roasted alum and 12 grams of
rock salt have been included.
The bark of babul tree is useful in the treatment of
eczema. About 25 grams each of this bark and the mango
bark should be boiled in about I litre of water and the
vapours allowed to foment the affected part. After the
fomentation, the affected part should be anointed with
A decoction of the bark, mixed with rock salt, should be
used as a gargle in treating tonsillitis.
The leaves of babul tree are effective in the treatment
of conjunctivitis. The leaves, ground to a paste, should
be applied on the affected eyes at night, supported by a
bandage which should be untied the next morning. This
removes pain and redness.
The leaves are beneficial in treating epiphora that is
watering of the eyes, in which tears flow onto the
cheeks due to abnormality of the tear drainage system.
About 250 grams of leaves should be boiled in one and a
quarter litre of water until only a quarter litre of
water is left. This should then be fdtered and kept in a
well-corked botde. The eye-lids should be painted
morning and evening with this liquid.
The bark of the tree is useful in leucorrhoea. Its
decoction should be used as a vaginal douche for
treating this disorder.
Fresh pods of babul tree are effective in sexual
disorders like spermatorrhoea, frequent night
discharges, loss of viscidity of the semen and premature
ejaculation. In Ayurveda, a preparation made from the
pods is considered highly beneficial in treating these
disorders. It is prepared thus: about 1 to 1.5 meters of
coarse cloth is spread evenly and its corners secured.
The fresh pods of babul tree -are pounded and their
juice squeezed. This fresh juice is pasted on the cloth
every morning and evening for at least 20 days until a
5-6 centimeters thick layer is formed on it. A small
piece of this cloth weighing 5 to 9 grams is cut and
boiled ina litre of cow's milk which is taken after
adding brown sugar to taste.
It is also said to increase the power of retention of
the semen. Even extremely debilitated patients suffering
from the bad consequences of masturbation are believed
to get rejuvenated by its use and attain normal
retentive power. It improves the viscidity of the semen
and is an excellent medicine for spermatorrhoea.
Another preparation made from the pods is also a very
effective remedy for spermatorrhoea. Tender, seedless pods
are dried in shade, powdered and mixed with an equal
weight of brown sugar. Six grams of this mixture may be
taken with milk in the morning.
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