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Cynodon dactylon back  |  home
Latin Names English Names Sanskrit Names Hindi Names

Cynodon dactylon Poaceae

Dhub Grass,
Bermuda or
Bahama Grass
Durva, Haritali Dhub, Hariali

Cynodon DactylonHabitat
The grass grows throughout India ascending up to a height above sea level of 8,000 ft.

Morphology Description (Habit)
A hardy perennial grass with creeping culms, rooting at nodes and forming spreading mats on the surface of the soil. It is abundant on road sides and paths, and readily takes possession of any uncultivated area1. It flowers nearly throughout the year.

Principal Constituents

Analysis of the green grass gave the following average composition (on dry matter basis): crude protein, 10.47; fibre, 28.17; N-free extr., 47.81; ether extr., 1.80; and total ash, 11.75%. The mineral constituents of the ash are: ash sol. in HCl, 5,60; CaO, 0.77; P2O5, 0.59;mgO, 0.34; NaO 0.23; and K2O, 2.08%. The digestible nutrients per 100 lb. of dry material are: crude proteins, 6.04; carbohydrates, 36.16; ether extr., 0.38; total, 43.05 lb; nutritive ratio, 6.1; and starch equivalent, 28.72.

An alkaloid isolated from the plant caused slowing of blood flow in the mesenteric capillaries of rats and mice; increased toxicity of isolated guinea pig ileum; hypoglycemic effect in rabbits; reduced bleeding and clotting time in rabbits in 2.5mg/kg i.v. A glycoside isolated from the plant produced hypotension in cats which was antagonised by atropine and produced an insignificant hypoglycemic effect in rabbits. The alcoholic extract of the entire plant produced antiviral activity against the vaccinia virus3.

The aqueous extract dried and ground, mixed with paraffin and the applied ointment (1% ointment) externally produced wound healing effects in experimentally produced wounds on the backs of rabbits (Subramanian, S. et.al. Wound healing properties of C. dactylon and Pongamia glabra4.

Clinical Studies
The paste made of the plant helped in the immediate stoppage of blood if applied on any wound and injuries and healed the wound if kept bandaged for three consecutive days. The same mixed with honey if snoffed becomes very effective in cases of epitaxis of any kind. Oral administration of the juice mixed with honey 2-3 times a day for a few days was found effective in menorrhagia; local application in the form of paste upon the lower abdomen reduced severe bleeding per vagina; a decoction mixed with sugar used orally 2-3 times a day was found effective in retention of urine5.

The lypholized pollen extract in 0.3, 1.3mg/kg i.p. in mice produced slight tremor lasting for 15 mins., 1 hr and 2 hrs respectively. In 1000mg dose it produced tremors, convulsion, general weakness leading to death6.

One decoction of the plant is diuretic, and considered useful in dropsy and anasarca. The expressed juice is astringent, and is applied to bleeding cuts and wounds7 rhizomes used in genito-urinary disorders (B.P.C., 77; U.S.D., 1242).

  1. Bor, Indian For. Rec., N. S., Bot.,1941, 2, 110.
  2. Sen, Misc. Bull., I.C.A.R.,No. 25, 1946, Appx.I, III.
  3. Annual report, P.R.U., H.I., Bombay.
  4. Astr. Of papers, Ind. J. Pharmacol. 18 (1): 47, 1986.
  5. Devsarmah, G.C. et. al., Some doubtful medicinal plants of Assam with their identification and medicinal value, Nagarjun 29 (10 to 12): 1-4, 1986.
  6. Kintanar, R.L. and Mercadasison, Fe: Pharmacological screening of Phillippine plants using a multi-dimension observation technique in mice, Phillip. J. Sci. 107 (1-2): 71-94, 1978.
  7. Kirt. & Basu, IV, 2689). The rhizomes and roots are used as adulterants and substitutes for couch grass (Agropyron repens Beauv.

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