Philippines’ Most Important Medicinal Trees: Bignai

Bignai is an important herbal tree native to the Philippines and neighboring countries.

BIGNAI (Antidesma bunius (L) Spreng.)


Bignai is a deciduous tree that can grow up to 30 meters in height and a diameter of about 40 cm. This tree that bear sour-tasting fruits usually grows wild along river banks in the country. Bignai is also grown as backyard tree. The Ilocanos of Northern Luzon call it Bugnay. It can also be found in other Southeast Asian countries like Vietnam, Thailand, Indonesia and Malaysia. It can also be found in Australia.


Image via Wikipedia

This medicinally significant Philippine tree is known in English as Chinese laurel, Currant tree and Salamander tree. The fruits of Bignai are eaten and are used in vinegar, brandy and wine-making.  The fruits are also used for making jam and jelly. Bignai has large oval shaped leathery evergreen leaves up to about 20 centimeters long and 7 cm in width.

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Medicinal Benefits:

  • The juice of Bignai fruits is used for heart disease.
  • The leaves, which are acidic and diaphoretic, have the power to increase perspiration.
  • Young leaves boiled with pot-herbs are used by the natives to cure syphilitic infections.
  • The wine produced from Bignai, if taken moderately, is good to the heart.
  • The leaves are used for snakebites.
  • The leaves and fruits are used for anemia and hypertension.
  • Bignai is used to treat parched tongue, lack of appetite, indigestion and sprains.


Image via Wikipedia

See also


Philippines’ Most Significant Medicinal Trees: Banaba


Philippines’ Most Remarkable Medicinal Trees: Agoho


Effective and Natural Medicines That Can Treat Kidney Disorders and Other Diseases

15 Common Illnesses and the Corresponding Herbal Plant


Health Benefits and Important Uses of Grapes


50 Amazingly Interesting Facts, Uses and Health Benefits of Hibiscus


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  1. very good information, as usual Nobert

  2. Great work. Thanks for sharing this one.

  3. Great article . . . Very helpful . . ,
    happy to read it. . .
    Must say you’re a wonderful write . . Thanks for sharing . .

    Mr ArRoGaNt.

  4. Another great article!

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  5. Another informative article. Thanks!

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