This post contains a long list of plants that have medicinal value – again, many of the “food plants” in the last post also do.  I will give a very brief indication of what ailments are treated with these herbal medicines, and if you want more information, please consult the excellent database at , a wonderful example of digital technology used to collect and share traditional knowledge.

Here are the plants in alphabetical order, usually with their names in the local language, Hiligaynon, or in Tagalog, followed by the Latin name and English name if there is one.   I may have misidentified some plants and mixed up some of the medicinal uses.   I welcome corrections!   Any mistakes aside, notice the range of ailments treated by these herbal medicines.

Alibhon or Sambong – Blumea balsamifera – treats cough, fever and flu symptoms – used for bathing after birth

Alugbati – Basella alba –  Malabar nightshade or Ceylon spinach – a great cooked vegetable, if slightly slimy; leaves are used as poultice for headaches

Anino or Bankoro – Morinda citrifolia – Malabar spinach – roasted fruits and leaves, pounded into a poultice, treat asthma and dizziness

Artamisa or Damong-maria – Artemisia vulgaris  –  wormwood – induces and regulates menstruation; leaves boiled for tea or made into massage ointment; cousin of antimalarial Artemisia annua

Bila-bila or Sabila – Aloe vera – the sap treats wounds and alleviates gas pains; used to prevent hair loss

Dulaw or Luyang dilaw – Curcuma longa – turmeric – tea from root for appetite, stomach pain and flatulence; treats scabies too

Ginsen –  Panax sp.? –  ginseng, though it doesn’t look like the Korean ginseng I know – a tonic and cure-all

Kalooy or Sulasi – Ocimum tenuiflorum  – holy basil – used in cooking in Thailand and Vietnam but to treat cold, cough and headache here

Klabo or Suganda – Coleus aromaticus – oregano (not the one we grow in NH) – leaf juice for cough and cold, leaf poultice for fever, massage for cold & tremors

Kulitis or Uray – Amaranthus spinosus – spiny amaranth or pigweed – cooked as a green vegetable; tea from roots for stomachache and lung disease

Lagundi – Vitex negundo – “five finger”or Chinese chastetree – tea from young leaves for cough, cold and fever

Langkawas or Tagbak – Alpinia galanga – galanga – a common condiment on mainland SE Asia but used here to treat skin rash and stomachache

Maritana or Aritana – Kalanchoe pinnata – poultice for boils, headache, toothache; juice for skin inflammation and itchiness

Pasaw – Pseuderanthemum reticulatum – leaf and juice for headache, fever, back pain, tremors, cold

Sta. Lucia – the plant I was shown doesn’t match either of the “Sta. Lucia”s in the database – I was told that crushed leaves are put on wounds for healing

Tanglad – Cymbopogon citratus – lemon grass – slightly different from citronella grass – gives flavor to many dishes; tea treats high blood pressure and fever; post-partum bath; the oil is antifungal and insecticidal

Tsaang gubat or Semente – Ehretia microphylla – woodland tea – tea from this plant treats diarrhea and stomach pain and is said to help a woman become pregnant

Alibhon - Blumea balsamifera

Alibhon – Blumea balsamifera

Alugbati - Basella alba

Alugbati – Basella alba

Anino - Morinda citrifolia

Anino – Morinda citrifolia

Artamisa - Artemisia vulgaris - wormwood

Artamisa – Artemisia vulgaris – wormwood

Bila-bila - Aloe vera

Bila-bila – Aloe vera

Dulaw - turmeric

Dulaw – Curcuma longa – turmeric

Ginsen - Panax ?

Ginsen – Panax ?

Klabo - "oregano" - Coleus aromaticus

Klabo – “oregano” – Coleus aromaticus

Kalooy - Ocimum tenuiflorum - holy basil - not used here for cooking

Kalooy – Ocimum tenuiflorum – holy basil – not used here for cooking

Kulitis - Amaranthus spinosus - very spiny!

Kulitis – Amaranthus spinosus – very spiny!

Lagundi or "5 Fingers" - Vitex negundo

Lagundi or “5 Fingers” – Vitex negundo


Digging galanga


Langkawas – Alpinia galanga – Galanga


Maritana - Kalanchoe pinnata

Maritana – Kalanchoe pinnata

Maritana again

Maritana again

Pasaw - Pseuderanthemum reticulatum

Pasaw – Pseuderanthemum reticulatum

Sta. Lucia

Sta. Lucia

Tanglad - lemon grass

Tanglad – lemon grass

Tsaang gubat - Ehretia microphylla

Tsaang gubat – Ehretia microphylla

Tsaang gubat again

Tsaang gubat again