Cream Fruit (Strophanthus gratus)


Strophanthus gratus (Wall. & Hook.) Baill. 1888, commonly called Cream Fruit, Climbing Oleander, Indian Rubber Vine or Rose Allamanda, is a tropical climbing shrub, native to West Africa.

The cream fruit shrub, with umbels of stunning, soft pink flowers with a burgundy center, became very popular in many tropical countries around the world, especially in South-East Asia. Climbing oleander (Strophanthus gratus) plants reach a height up to about 8 meters, the flowers exhale a tantalising rose-like scent. Strophanthus gratus belongs to the dogbane family (Apocynaceae) and seeds of Strophanthus plants has been used as a strong arrow poison by African aboriginals. In the 19. century scientist found that the seeds contain g-Strophanthin, also called Ouabain, which is classed among cardiac glycosides. G-Strophanthin, oraly taken, is considered to prevent heart attack and Angina pectoris without harmful secondary effects.

While this natural drug has been widely and successfully used in the 50th, nowadays it has been discredited by the pharmaceutical industry and their associated scientists, even if some medics and sovereign scientists claim, inexpensive g-Strophanthin is the solution to the heart attack problem. As we live in North of Thailand, we`ve got in touch with many hill tribes, who live far away from medical services in the tropical alpine world. Not just a few hill tribes reach a very high age and this people still have an enormous knowledge about nature medicine. Unfortunatly natural drugs are mostly very cheap, so the pharmaceutical industry seems to fight against that kind of medicine, as there is not much profit to make. I still believe, for every sickness there is a remedy, provided by our mother nature.

Cream Fruit (Strophanthus gratus)
© Orchids
Image: Cream Fruit (Strophanthus gratus)

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