Zanemvula Traditional Healing 
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Boophane disticha

Boophane disticha

Afrikaans:   Gifbol

English :  Poison bulb

IsiXhosa: Ibati, Incwadi


Description and diagnostic features   

   It is  brown bulb growing above ground. The bulb scales help protect the bulb against fire damage.  The leaves grow out in a flat fan and the leaves are long and twisted. The younger the bulb the more twisted are the leaves.


Part used     

    Dried bulb scales.

    The scales can be pulled off the bulb without having to dig it out. Do not remove too many so the bulb is still protected from fires.


Uses            

     The  dried bulb scales are good against pain.  They can be used on the ankles of  old people who develop sores on the ankles.   They can also be used in the first few days after circumcision to control the pain. Once the pain is over it is best to use Umatunga ( Eucomis ) bulb scales for fastest healing.

      The dried bulb scales can also be burnt and the smoke breathed in to facilitate contact with your male ancestors.


Warning          

   It is quite toxic so do not handle too much.

   It can cause double vision as it disrupts your eye’s focus.


Habitat             

   Mostly in sandy soils where grass does not grow easily.


Propagation    

    Protect the seedlings from grass.

     Plant the seeds while fresh. They can even start sprouting within the ends of the umbel soon after the umbel dries out.