Nyctanthes arbor-tristis

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Hengra bubar, night-flowering jasmine, Shiuli
Shiuli phool - panoramio.jpg
Scientific classification edit
Kingdom: Plantae
Clade: Tracheophytes
Clade: Angiosperms
Clade: Eudicots
Clade: Asterids
Order: Lamiales
Family: Oleaceae
Genus: Nyctanthes
N. arbor-tristis
Binomial name
Nyctanthes arbor-tristis
  • Bruschia macrocarpa Bertol.
  • Nyctanthes dentata Blume
  • Nyctanthes tristis Salisb.
  • Parilium arbor-tristis (L.) Gaertn.
  • Scabrita scabra L.
  • Scabrita triflora L.

Nyctanthes arbor-tristis, also known as the Night-flowering jasmine or Parijata (Parvati chi phula), is a species of Nyctanthes native to South Asia and Southeast Asia.[2][3][4][5]

Nyctanthes arbor-tristis is a shrub or a small tree growing to 10 m (33 ft) tall, with flaky grey bark. The leaves are opposite, simple, 6–12 cm (2.4–4.7 in) long and 2–6.5 cm (0.79–2.56 in) broad, with an entire margin. The flowers are fragrant, with a five- to eight-lobed white corolla with an orange-red centre; they are produced in clusters of two to seven together, with individual flowers opening at dusk and finishing at dawn. The fruit is a bilobed, flat brown heart-shaped to round capsule 2 cm (0.79 in) diameter, each lobe containing a single seed.[4][5]

Despite its common name, the species is not a "true jasmine" and not of the genus Jasminum.

Names and symbolism[edit]

The tree is sometimes called the "tree of sorrow", because the flowers lose their brightness during daytime; the scientific name arbor-tristis also means "sad tree". The flowers can be used as a source of yellow dye for clothing. The flower is called Pārijāta (पारिजात) in Sanskrit, rātarāni (रातरानी, Queen of the Night) in Hindi, Gangaseuli and Jharaa sephali in Odisha, India. In the Borok Tipruri culture, it is associated with the cycle of life, i.e., birth and dying. It is popularly used as a garland for the dead.[citation needed]

The flower is the official flower of the state of West Bengal,[6] and of Kanchanaburi Province, Thailand.[citation needed] It is known as Parijata, Shefali and Siuli around West Bengal. Nyctanthes arbor-tristis is commonly known as night-flowering jasmine and coral jasmine. It is referred to as Har-shringaar in Bihar's Mithilanchal and Madhesh. It is called Xewālee (Xewālee, শেৱালী) in Assamese, while in Sri Lanka, it is called Sepalika (සේපාලිකා). In Karnataka it is called parijatha(ಪಾರಿಜಾತ), In Telugu it is called parijatam పారిజాతం, Kerala, where it is called Pavizhamalli (പവിഴമല്ലി) in Malayalam, Pavaḻamalli (பவழ மல்லி) in Tamil, paardak (पार्दक) in Konkani, prajakta (प्राजक्त) in Marathi. In Myanmar, it is called Seikphaloo ( my:ဆိပ်ဖလူး ). It is used for pujas and similar ceremonies[citation needed]. It also has importance in old Malayalam romantic songs.[citation needed]

Chemical constituents[edit]


Traditional Medicine[edit]

The leaves have been used in Ayurvedic medicine and Homoeopathy for sciatica, arthritis, and fevers, and as a laxative.[7]


Krishna Uproots the Parijata Tree, manuscript from a Bhagavata Purana.

Parijata appears in several Hindu religious stories and is often related to the Kalpavriksha. In one such story from Hindu mythology, which appears in Bhagavata Purana, the Mahabharata and the Vishnu Purana, parijat appeared as the result of the Samudra manthan (Churning of the Milky Ocean) and Krishna battled with Indra to win parijat.[6] Further on, his wife Satyabhama demanded the tree be planted in the backyard of her palace. It so happened that in spite of having the tree in her backyard, the flowers used to fall in the adjacent backyard of the other queen Rukmini, who was favourite of Krishna, because of her superior devotion and humility.

It is the subject of a prabandha named Parijatapaharanamu in Telugu literature written by Nandi Thimmana, the court-poet of Krishnadevaraya.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ IUCN SSC Global Tree Specialist Group; Botanic Gardens Conservation International (BGCI); Lakhey, P. & Pathak, J. (2022). "Nyctanthes arbor-tristis". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. 2022: e.T150224828A152201552. Retrieved 23 January 2023.
  2. ^ a b Kew World Checklist of Selected Plant Families, Nyctanthes arbor-tristis
  3. ^ "Nyctanthes arbor-tristis". Germplasm Resources Information Network (GRIN). Agricultural Research Service (ARS), United States Department of Agriculture (USDA). Retrieved 16 December 2017.
  4. ^ a b Flora of Pakistan: Nyctanthes arbor-tristis
  5. ^ a b AgroForestry Tree Database: Nyctanthes arbor-tristis Archived 2011-07-16 at the Wayback Machine
  6. ^ a b Nyctanthes arbor-tristisArchived 2 July 2017 at the Wayback Machine
  7. ^ Saxena RS, Gupta B, Lata S (August 2002). "Tranquilizing, antihistaminic and purgative activity of Nyctanthes arbor tristis leaf extract". J Ethnopharmacol. 81 (3): 321–5. doi:10.1016/S0378-8741(02)00088-0. PMID 12127232.

External links[edit]