Pride of India

Lagerstroemia speciosa

Lythraceae

Location in our garden

Section A (Principal)

Habitus

Trees. A perennial shrub to large tree with multiple trunks or stems up to 45 m tall and 150 cm in diameter 

Part Used

  • Leaves
  • Seeds
  • Bark
  • Flowers
  • Roots

Growing Requirements

  • Full Sunshine

Habitat

  • Riverbanks
  • Forest
  • Coastal

Overview

Pride of India is native to topical South-East Asia. It is widely distributed in India, Malaysia, and the Philippines. It is also widely commercial for ornamental purposes and as roadside trees. This species is very appreciated in the horticulture market for its large, showy, bright pink to lavender flowers. Currently it is listed as invasive in Belize, Costa Rica, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands.
 

Vernacular Names

Lilas des Indes (French), astromelia (Spanish), koninginnebloem (Netherlands), Bungor raya (Malaysia), Chuang-muu (Thailand), Banaba (Philippines), Gawkng-uchyamang (Myanmar), B[awf]ng l[aw]ng n[uw][ows]c (Vietnamese).
 

Agroecology

A plant of the moist, lowland tropics and subtropics, where it is found at elevations up to 400 m. It grows best in areas where annual daytime temperatures are within the range 18-35 °C, but can tolerate 6-43 °C. When dormant, the plant can survive temperatures down to about -2 °C, but young growth can be severely damaged at -1 °C. It prefers a mean annual rainfall in the range 2,000- 3,500 mm, but tolerates 1,3005,000 mm.

Morphology

  • Bark - smooth, gray to cream-colored, and peels off in irregular flakes.
  • Leaves - smooth, large, spatulate, oblong to elliptic-ovate, 4 to 8 cm in width, 12-25 cm in length, shedding its leaves the first months of the year.
  • Flowers - in a large, axillary or terminal panicle, often showy, calyx funnel or bell shaped.
  • Fruit - a large nut-like capsule, obovoid or ellipsoid, and 2 to 3.5 cm long.
  • Seed - pale brown, with a wing 12-18 mm long.

 

Chemical Constituents

Flavonoids, Saponins, Tannin, Corosolic acid, Ellagitannin Lagerstroemin, Gallotannins.
 

Traditional Medicinal Uses

  • It is used in the treatment of blood pressure, renal and immune system benefits.
  • Study evaluated of extract of dried fruits for antinociceptive, antidiarrheal, and cytotoxic activities.
  • It can lower blood sugar and may cause blood sugar to go too low when taken together with antidiabetic medications.
  • Seeds considered to have narcotic properties, also employed against aphthae.
  • A decoction of the bark is used against diarrhoea and abdominal pains.
  • A leaf poultice is used to relief malarial fever.
  • A preparation from dried leaves, known as “banaba” is widely used across Asia to treat diabetes and urinary problems.
  • The bark, flowers and leaves are used to facilitate bowel movements.
  • Decoction of leaves and flowers is used for fevers and as diuretic.
  • Decoction of fruits or roots gargled for aphthous stomatitis.
     

Cultivation

L. speciosa spreads mostly by seeds. However, in cultivation, propagation by cuttings and by division of root suckers is possible.
 

Snapshot of Part Used

Reference Sources

  1. CABI. Lagerstroemia speciosa(Pride of India). https://www.cabi.org/isc/datasheet/29704. 27.07.2020
  2. NCBI. Antidiabetes and Anti-obesity Activity of Lagerstroemia speciosa.https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2176148/. 27.07.2020
  3. Useful Tropical Plants. Lagerstroemia speciosa. http://tropical.theferns.info/viewtropical.php? id=Lagerstroemia+speciosa. 7.12.2020
  4. StuartXchange. Philippine Medicinal Plants: Banaba.http://www.stuartxchange.org/Banaba.html References: 1. 2. 3. 4. 7-1-2020
  5. GlobinMed. Lagerstroemia speciosa (L.) Pers.https://www.globinmed.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=79433:lagerstroemia-speciosa-l-pers&catid=8&Itemid=113. 07-12-2020