Raj Patha   
Foto info
Raj Patha
ative Photo: Prashant Awale
Common name: Raj Patha • Hindi: राज पाठा Raj Patha • Kannada: paduvala balli, phalani • Malayalam: pada-kelengu, patakkilannu • Marathi: थोरली पाडावळ Thorali Padval, मोठी पहाडवेल Mothi pahadvel • Sanskrit: बृहत् पाठा Bruhat Patha, akaisika, ambastha, ambasthaki • Tamil: malaitanki, ponmucuttai • Telugu: patatige, paatathige
Botanical name: Cyclea peltata    Family: Menispermaceae (Moonseed family)

Raj Patha is a slender twining shrub, frequently climbing up on tall trees. Leaves are alternate, heart shaped, 2.5-10 cm long, 2.5-3.75 cm broad, stipule 5-10 cm long and nerves 7-11. The flowers are unisexual, pale yellow, in panicles occurring in leaf axils. The fruits are ovoid drupes, brown or scarlet in color. The seeds are covered. The roots are tuberous, cylindrical, irregularly curved, with grayish brown surface. The plant blooms in the rainy season.
Medicinal uses: The roots of patha have great medicinal value and are used for medicinal purpose, both, internally as well as externally. External application of the paste of its roots and leaves is extremely beneficial, in infected wounds, sinuses, and skin diseases like erysipelas and pruritus. The external application of this paste is said to be useful in serpant bite also. The root juice is salutary in headache, as nasal drops. The roots have anti-inflammatory activity and hence alleviated the edema. Patha is a valuable wound healer and antidermatosis herb.

Identification credit: Dinesh Valke, Tanay Bose, Neil Soares
Photographed en route to Lohagad, near Lonavala, Maharashtra.
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