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Rauvolfia serpentina Rauvolfia root Pule pandak Apocynaceae

Rauvolfia serpentine, Rauvolfia root, Apocynaceae, Pule pandak	Rauvolfia serpentina is an upright perennial shrub 20-60 cm in height. The stem is green, erect, usually unbranched and slender. Leaves are generally in whorls of 3-4, and more condensed in the upper part of the stem, simple, glabrous, lanceolate or obovate. The inflorescence is generally a terminal, dense flowered cyme forming a hemispheric head on the ends of the peduncles. The flowers are whit to pinkish in color. Fruits are drupaceous, sometimes single but generally didymous, united halfway, oval, 4-5 mm long and 3-4 mm broad. Ripe fruit is purple black in color. The seeds are single in each fruit, oval, with a rough and dull surface.
The species is commonly found in open places or deciduous forests, from lowlands up to 1200m a.s.l. Clayey to clay loam soil is most suitable for good growth. Where the species grows in a natural state the soil has a pH 4.
Medical use: Since ancient times, extracts from R. Serpentina have been recommended for the treatment of a great variety of diseases. The bark of the roots is commonly used as: febrifuge,anthelmintic, antidote,sedative agent,hypotensive agent .
Decoctions of the leaves can also be applied externally to injuries, ulcers and scabies. The latex is also used as a Trachome. populations are usually found under stands of Tectonia grandis.