African Journal of Biotechnology

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Traditional information and antibacterial activity of four Bulbine species (Wolf)

RM Coopoosamy


Ethnobotanical survey of Bulbine Wolf, (Asphodelaceae) used for various treatment, such as, diarrhea, burns, rashes, blisters and insect bites, was carried out in the Eastern Cape Province of South Africa. Information on the parts used and the methods of preparation was collected through questionnaire which was administered to the herbalists, traditional healers and rural dwellers which indicated the extensive use of Bulbine species. Most uses of Bulbine species closely resemble that of Aloe. Dried leaf bases and leaf sap are the commonest parts of the plants used. Preparations were in the form of decoctions and infusions. Bulbine frutescens was the most frequently and commonly used of the species collected for the treatment of diarrhoea, burns, rashes, blisters, insect bites, cracked lips and mouth ulcers. The leaf, root and rhizome extracts of B. frutescens, Bulbine natalensis, Bulbine latifolia and Bulbine narcissifolia were screened for antibacterial activities to verify their use by traditional healers.

Keywords: Herbal medicine, diarrhea, medicinal plants, Bulbine species, antibacterial activity

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