Talispatra is a coniferous medicinal tree found in Himalaya. It is known as Talispatra in Ayurveda, Talispatri in Siddha and Talisapattar in Unani. For therapeutic purpose the leaves of the tree are used. The leaves can be used fresh, dried, as tincture, infusion or confection. They are mainly indicated in infections of upper and lower respiratory tract.
The leaves powder along with Vasaka leaf juice and honey is given to treat asthma, cough, and blood vomiting. Externally the leaves are used in rheumatic and neuralgic pains.
Abies webbiana is a tall, evergreen fir tree with thick, spreading, horizontal branches. It reaches height of 60 meters. It is a coniferous tree found in Himalayas at high altitude of 2800-10000 feet. It is most common at higher range of Himalaya. The dark-brown cones appear in October-November.
The wood of the tree is used in constructional work.
Abies webbiana leaves are single, spirally, arranged all-round the branchlets, flat, narrow, linear, one to three inches long, with narrow short terete petiole. The flowers are monoecious, either male or female, but both sexes can be found on the same plant. The pollination of flower is done by Wind. It prefers moist soil and grow well in heavy clay soils. It can be grown in shade or sun.
The botanical name of Talispatra is Abies webbiana Lindl. It belongs to plant family Pinaceae. Below is given taxonomical classification of plant.
- Kingdom: Plantae – Plants
- Subkingdom: Tracheobionta – Vascular plants
- Superdivision: Spermatophyta – Seed plants
- Division: Coniferophyta – Conifers
- Class: Pinopsida
- Order: Pinales
- Family: Pinaceae – Pine family
- Genus: Abies Mill. – fir P
- Species: Abies webbiana
- Abies spectabilis (D. Don) Spach.
- Pinus webbiana Wall. ex Lamb.
- Pinus spectabilis D. Don.
Part(s) used for medicinal purpose: Leaves
Plant type: Pine Tree
Distribution: The great Himalaya, Kashmir to Assam, Sikkim, Darjeeling, Bengal, Nepal.
- Latin name: Abies webbiana
- Ayurveda: Patradhyam, Patradhya, Talisa, Talisapatra, Talisha, Dhatriparni, Dhatripatra तालीसपत्र, तालीस, धात्रीपत्र
- Unani: Talisapattar
- Siddha: Talispatri
- Assamese: Talish
- Bengali: Talish Pala, Taleesh Patra बर्मि
- English: Himalayan Siver, Indian Silver Fir, The West-Himalayan High-Level Fir, The East-Himalayan Fir
- Gujrati: Talish Patra
- Hindi: Talish Patra तालीसपतर
- Kannada: Tales Patra, Talisapathra, Shukodara
- Malayalam: Talisapatra, Taleesapatri
- Marathi: Laghu Taleespatra
- Oriya: Talis
- Tamil: Talispatra, Taleesapatri
- Telugu: Taleesapatri
- Urdu: Zarnab
- Folk: Badar, Chilrow, Morinda, Raisalla, Talispatra
- Bhutia: Dunshing
- Nepali: Gobray salla
In many parts of India the leaves of Taxus wallichiana and Rhododendron anthopogon are used as Talispatra.
Constituents of Talispatra
The leaves contain biflavonoid, abiesin, n-triacontanol, beta-sitosterol and betuloside.
Essential oil from leaves contains alpha-pinene, l-limonene, deltacarene, dipentene, l-bornyl acetate and l-cardinene. The oil is used in respiratory ailments both internally and externally.
Ayurvedic Properties and Action of Talispatra
In Ayurveda, Talis / Talisha consist of dried needle like leaves of Abies webbiana. It has sweet, bitter and pungent taste and hot in potency. It is mainly indicated in respiratory disorders, phthisis and excessive phlegm. It is good for heart, improves appetite and balances Vata and Kapha.
Talisadi Churna which is prepared from Talisa patra (Abies webbiana leaf), Trikatu, Dalchini (Cinnamomum zeylanicum), ela (Elettaria cardamomum), Vanshalochna (Bambusa arundinacea) and Misri, is given to treat acute-chronic allergic bronchitis, asthma, cough and digestive disorders. In chronic asthma it reduces the frequency and severity of asthmatic attacks.
- Rasa (taste on tongue): Madhura (Sweet), Katu (Pungent), Tikta (Bitter)
- Guna (Pharmacological Action): Laghu (Light), Tikshna (Sharp)
- Virya: Ushna (Heating)
- Vipaka (transformed state after digestion): Katu (Pungent)
- Action: Dipana, Hridya, Vatakaphapham, Shleshmapittajit
Therapeutic uses: Swasa (chronic obstructive pulmonary diseases), kasa (cough), gulma (tumor), Agnimandya (hypochlorhydria), amadosha (amoebiasis), hikka (hiccup), chhardi (vomiting), krimi (helminthiasis) and mukharoga (mouth disorders).
Important formulations: Drakshadi Churna, Talisadi Churna, Bhaskara Lavana, Talispatra churna, Pranada Gutika, Jatiphaladi Churna, Puga Khanda, Talisadi Modak
Important Medicinal Properties
Talis leaves are rich in medicinal properties. The understanding of these properties will help us to better utilize this herb / plant. These also indicate the conditions in which we should avoid it. For example, it has contraceptive and thermogenic properties and therefore should not be used while trying for pregnancy. Below is given medicinal properties along with the meaning.
- Aromatic: pleasant and distinctive smell.
- Anticatarrhal: remove excess mucous from the body.
- Antitussive: prevent or relieve a cough.
- Antispasmodic: used to relieve spasm of involuntary muscle.
- Antirheumatic: alleviating or preventing rheumatism.
- Antiseptic: Capable of preventing infection by inhibiting the growth of infectious agents.
- Appetizer: improves appetite.
- Aphrodisiac: stimulates sexual desire.
- Anti–inflammatory: Reducing inflammation by acting on body
- Antipyretic/antifebrile/febrifuge: Effective against fever. Significantly lowers body temperature in fever.
- Carminative: Preventing the formation or causing the expulsion of flatulence.
- Decongestant: used to relieve nasal congestion.
- Expectorant: promotes the secretion of sputum by the air passages, used to treat coughs.
- Blood purifiers: removes toxins.
- Female antifertility: capable of or tending to reduce or destroy fertility / contraceptive.
Medicinal Uses of Talispatra
The leaf powder / juice of Abies webbiana or Talispatra is indicated in Asthma, Bronchitis, Cough, Fever, Gas, Headache, Hemoptysis, Hoarseness, Neuralgia, Phthisis, and Splenosis (acquired condition defined as autotransplantation of viable splenic tissue throughout different anatomic compartments of the body).
The essential oil obtained from the leaves is used to treat colds, rheumatism and nasal congestion.
The leaf powder is taken in dose of 2-3 grams to improve appetite.
Cough, hoarseness of voice, fever, congestion
2-3 grams of leaf powder is mixed with equal amount of Mishri / Rock candy. Mishri consist of big white, sweet lumps of crystals. It has demulcent and cooling properties.
- The leaf powder is taken in dose of 2-3 grams
- The leaves are applied topically.
Dosage of Talispatra
The recommended dose of leaf powder is 2-3 gm for treatment of diseases.
In infants, the fresh leaf juice is given in dose of 5-10 drops in water or mother’s milk for fever, malaria, teething, and cough.
Contraindications, Interactions, and Side Effects (Talispatra / Himalayan Fir)
- It is hot in potency.
- It should be used cautiously in pitta prakriti people.
- It has antifertility effect.
- Avoid taking in ulcers, acidity, burning sensation, and ulcerative colitis.
- Excess use can cause vomiting, faintness, convulsions and many other side effects.
- Always take in recommended amounts.