Indian Lycium
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Indian Lycium
ative Photo: Nongthombam Ullysess
Common name: Indian Lycium, Indian Barberry, Boxthorn Barberry • Hindi: कसमले Kasmale, दारुहळी Daruhaldi, Chatrol • Kumaon: Kirmora • Urdu: ﺍﹺﺷﻜﻴﻦ Ishkeen, Kushmul, Zarch • Gujarati: કસમલ Kasmal • Kashmiri: Kaav Dachh کاؤ دچھ
Botanical name: Berberis lycium    Family: Berberidaceae (Barberry family)
Synonyms: Berberis afghanica, Berberis angustifolia, Berberis heteracantha

Indian Lycium is a semi deciduous shrub, up to 3-4 m, with white stems, and narrow fine-pointed leathery leaves mostly without spiny teeth, glaucous beneath. Flowers are dull yellow, 7-8 mm across, borne in leaf-axils, in clusters 3-5 cm, longer than the leaves. Leaves are inverted-lanceshaped, 2-4 cm; stems hairless, stem spines 6-20 mm. Berries are ellipsoid-ovoid, hairless, greenish first, turning dark purple or black when ripe, 9-10 mm including the 1 mm style. Indian Lycium is found in shrubberies; common in cultivated areas of W. Himalaya, from Pakistan to E Nepal, at altitudes of 1500-3000 m. Flowering: March-June.
Medicinal uses: Indian Lycium's roots are used as remedy for swollen and sore eyes, broken bones, wounds, gonorrhea, curative piles, unhealthy ulcers, acute conjunctive and in chronic opthalmia, also used as bitter tonic astringent, diaphoretic and febrifuge. Leaves are given in jaundice.

Identification credit: Nongthombam Ullysess Photographed in Mussoorie, Uttarakhand & Rajouri, J&K.

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