Scientific Name Woodfordia fruticosa (L.)Kurz. (W. fruticosa Kurz syn. W.floribunda Salisb.) Family Lythraceae Used Part Flowers. Distribution Area A shrub, commonly occurring throughout North India, ascending to an altitude of c. 1,500 m. in the Himalayas, but rather scarce in South India. Common Uses . The dried flowers are credited with stimulant and astringent properties, and are available in the market. They are often added to the Ayurvedic Arishtasto cause alcoholic fermentation. The commercial drug consists of dried fruits, flowers, buds and broken pieces of inflorescences. It is much used in bowel complaints and haemorrhages and is also administered in menorrhagia and seminal weakness. An extract of the plant was found to stimulate the contraction of the intestinal loop, and investigations have corroborated the clinical use of the drug in bowel complaints. The drug also shows antipyretic action which compares favourably with that of acetylsalicylic acid. The dried flowers are powdered and sprinkled over ulcers and wounds to diminish discharge and promote granulation. In Madhya Pradesh, a paste of the flowers is used for the treatment of coughs. The flowers also enter into an ointment used on the pustules of smallpox. The dried flowers are used as a popular Indonesian and Malesian drug `Sidowaya'. The dried flowers are used in dysentery and liver diseases in Sri Lanka, and in diarrhoea in North eastern India. The Bhotias of Himalaya use the flower juice as a cold drink in summer. The use of flowers in `Nimba Arishta', an ayurvedic drug used in Srilanka, resulted in a substantial increase of the inhibition of both human complement activity and chemiluminescence generated by zymosan- stimulated human polymorphonuclear leukocytes. The increased biological activity was due to the released immuno active substance from the flowers. The blossoms are gathered during February-April and dried. The dye is prepared by steeping the flowers in cold or hot water. Alum or lime is added to this solution as a mordant, though in sevcral parts of India dyeing is done without the mordants. The material to be dyed is immersed in this solution several times until a pink colour of desired depth is obtained. The twigs and leaves are also used in dyeing. Pharmacological Effect The leaves show antibiotic activity in vitroagainst Micrococcus pyogenes var. aureus.An extract of the flowers shows activity against Helminthosporium sativum.The plant extract is also active against Ranikhetdisease. Aqueous and methanolic extract of the flowers showed strong nematicidal activity against the larva of Toxocaria