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Medicinal Plant: Limonsito (Triphasia trifolia P. Wils.)

By goGreen | April 26, 2012
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Family • Rutaceae
Limonsito
Triphasia trifolia P. Wils.
LIME BERRY

Scientific names

Common names

Limonia trifolia Burm. f.Kalamansito (Ilk., Ibn.)
Limonia trifoliata Linn.Kamalitos (Tag.)
Triphasia trifoliata DC.Limoncito (Span.)
Triphasia aurantiola Lour.Limonsitong-kastila (Bik.)
Sua-sua (Bik.)
Suang-kastila (Bik.)
Tagimunau (Neg.)
Limeberry (Engl.)
Myrtle lime (Engl.)
Trifoliate limeberry (Engl.)
Triphasia (Engl.)

Botany

Limonsito Smooth shrub growing to a height of 2 meters. The leaf has two sharp and slender spines at the base. The short-petioled leaves have three leaflets, ovate to oblong-ovate, the terminal one 2 to 4 cm long; the lateral ones, smaller. The margins are crenate. Flowers are very short-stalked, white, fragrant, and about 1 cm long. Fruit is ovoid, fleshy and red, somewhat resinous, about 12 mm long.

Distribution

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- Throughout the Philippines, in thickets and settled areas; in some places gregarious and abundant.
- Introduced; probably Chinese in origin.
- Pantropic in cultivation.
- Naturalized in many countries.
- Cultivated for its ornamental fragrant flower and edible red fruit. Attractive as a garden hedge.

Parts utilized

Leaves and fruits.

Constituents and Properties

• Berries are lemon-scented.
• Fragrant white flowers have a scent of orange blossoms.
• Leaves exude a resinous scent when bruised.
• Considered antifungal and antibacterial.
• Study yielded a new bicoumarin from the leaves and stems; the two coumarinic moieties are derivatives of mexoticin and meranzin hydrate.
• From the oil 81 compounds were identified, the main constituent was germacrene B.

Uses
Nutrition
Edible: Fruit, raw or cooked.
Ripe fruit is pleasant and sweet tasting.
Fruit can be pickled or made into jams.

Folkloric
- Leaves applied externally for colic, diarrhea, and skin afflictions.
- Fruits used for cough and sore throat.
- Preparation: Peel the fruits and soak overnight lime (apog) water. Rinse, and boil in 1 cup water with 1/2 cup sugar. Rinse and boil a second and third time as preferred, syrupy or candied, using as needed for cough or sore throat.
- Among islanders of the Indian Ocean, fresh crushed leaves applied to dandruff. Also, used for coughs.

Others
Leaves used in making aromatic bath salts.
Leaves used as cosmetic.

Studies
• Phenolics / Anti-HSV: Study on the inhibitory effects of phenolic compounds on herpes simplex virus and HIV included 13 coumarins from Triphasia trifolia. The data suggests the bis-hydroxyphenyl structure as a potential target for anti-HSV and HIV drugs development.

• Bicoumarin: Study yielded a new bicoumarin from the leaves and stems of Triphasia trifolia.The two coumarinic moieties are derivatives of mexoticin and meranzin hydrate.

Availability
Wild-crafted.

Source: Philippine Medicinal Plants

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