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Acacia concinna - Bahuphenarasa

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Acacia concinna, "Shikakai"

Bahuphenarasa is a climbing shrub native to Asia, common in the warm plains of central and south India. It's fruit is known as shikakai in India. It is one of the good herbal remedies for hair.


Black fever, Malaria, Diabetes, Chronic cough, Asthmetic obstruction, Jaundice[1]

Parts Used

Fruits, Bark, Leaves[1]

Chemical Composition

In commercial extracts, when the plant is hydrolyzed it yields lupeol, spinasterol, acacic acid, lactone, and the natural sugars glucose, arabinose and rhamnose. It also contains hexacosanol, spinasterone, oxalic acid, tartaric acid, citric acid, succinic acid, ascorbic acid, and the alkaloids calyctomine and nicotine.[2]

Common names

Language Common name
Kannada Sige kayi, Sigeballi
Hindi Kochi, Reetha
Malayalam Cheeyakayi, Chinik-kaya, Shikai, Cheenikka
Tamil Shika, Sheekay, Chikaikkai
Telugu Cheekaya, Chikaya, Gogu
Marathi NA
Gujarathi NA
Punjabi NA
Kashmiri NA
Sanskrit Aaavartaki
English Shikakai, Soap-pod



A large prickly climbing shrub



Kind Shape Feature
Bipinnate Oblong Pinnae 4-7 pairs, 4cm long; 20-25 pairs, 8 x 1.7mm



Type Size Color and composition Stamen More information
Bisexual 1cm across Cream or white Many Flower buds are purple or dark red, Plants flower January through April



Type Size Mass Appearance Seeds More information
A stout pod 15 x 2.5cm Fruit are on trees from February to March The seedpods are widely used as a soap substitute in India 10-14 seeds {{{6}}}

Other features

List of Ayurvedic medicine in which the herb is used

Suriya Gold

Where to get the saplings

Mode of Propagation


How to plant/cultivate

Acacia concinna can be grown from seeds. The seedlings can be transplanted. Seeds are pretreated by soaking in cold water overnight then sowed in polybag or beds.[5]

Commonly seen growing in areas

Tropical dry forests.

Photo Gallery


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 "Karnataka Medicinal Plants Volume - 2" by Dr.M. R. Gurudeva, Page No.704, Published by Divyachandra Prakashana, #45, Paapannana Tota, 1st Main road, Basaveshwara Nagara, Bengaluru.
  2. Wikipedea
  3. Herbarium JCB
  4. Herbarium JCB
  5. Cultivation details

External Links