Myrica esculenta

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Myrica esculenta
Scientific classification edit
Kingdom: Plantae
Clade: Angiosperms
Clade: Eudicots
Clade: Rosids
Order: Fagales
Family: Myricaceae
Genus: Myrica
M. esculenta
Binomial name
Myrica esculenta
Buch.-Ham. ex D.Don

Box myrtle
Myrica integrifolia
Myrica sapida
Myrica nagi[citation needed]

Myrica esculenta is a tree or large shrub native to the hills of northern India and Nepal. Its common names include box myrtle, bayberry, and kaphal.


Fruits of Kaphal plant at Dailekh, Nepal.

Myrica esculenta is found in hilly regions of northern India and Nepal especially in the regions of Garhwal and Kumaon of Uttarakhand and western Nepal especially at elevations of 900–1,800 m (3,000–6,000 ft).[1][unreliable source?] It is also found at elevations below 1,500 m (4,900 ft) in the midhills of Nepal.


Myrica esculenta has a tree of medium height, about 6 to 8 m (20 to 26 ft). Bark is soft and brittle. Leaves are conjoint, 30–60 cm (1–2 ft) feet long that has leaflets in pairs of 6 to 9 and has a width of 19 mm (0.75 in). Flowers are of white color and are found in bunches. Fruit is a globose, succulent drupe, with a hard endocarp; diameter 1.1–1.3 cm (0.43–0.51 in); average mass 670 mg (10.3 gr). Seeds are triangular in shape and are astringent in taste.

According to Ayurveda, it has two varieties based on the color of flower: Shweta (white) and Rakta (red).[1]

Chemical constituents[edit]

The bark is yellow and contains the chemical substances myricetin, myricitrin and glycosides.[1] Leaves of the plant also contain flavone-4'-hydroxy-3',5,5'-trimethoxy-7-O-β-I-D-glucopyranosy)(1→4)-α-L-rhamnopyranoside; flavone-3',4'-dihydroxy-6-methoxy-7-O-α-L-rhamnopyranoside; β-sitosterol; β-sitosterol-β-D-glucopyranoside and quercetin.[2]


  1. ^ a b c "Myrica esculenta". Retrieved 2011-01-26.
  2. ^ Bamola A, Semwal DK, Semwal S, Rawat U. Flavonoid glycosides from Myrica esculenta leaves. Journal of the Indian Chemical Society. 2009;86(5):535-6. Archived 2015-07-23 at the Wayback Machine