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Toddalia asiatica.jpg
Leaves and fruits
Toddalia asiatica 18.JPG
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
(unranked): Rosids
Order: Sapindales
Family: Rutaceae
Subfamily: Toddalioideae
Genus: Toddalia
Species: T. asiatica
Binomial name
Toddalia asiatica
(L.) Lam.

Paullinia asiatica

Toddalia is a monotypic genus[1] of flowering plants in the citrus family containing the single species Toddalia asiatica, which is known by the English common name orange climber.

Native Range[edit]

It is native to many countries in Africa and Asia.[2] Examples include South Africa where in Afrikaans it is called ranklemoentjie, and in Venda, gwambadzi.[3] It is very popular among the Kikuyus of Central Kenya, where it is known as mururue.[4]


It grows in forested riparian habitat with high rainfall.[3] The destruction of forest habitat in Africa threatens the species' survival.[5]


This is a liana with woody, corky, thorny stems that climb on trees, reaching up to 10 m in length. It has shiny green citrus-scented leaves, yellow-green flowers, and orange fruits about half a cm wide that taste like orange peel.[3] The seeds are dispersed by birds and monkeys that eat the fruits.[3] In particular, the scaly-breasted munia prefers to nest in these trees.

Medicinal Uses[edit]

The plant is used medicinally by many African peoples, including the Maasai, who use it for malaria,[6] cough, and influenza.[3] The roots contain coumarins that have antiplasmodial activity.[7] Extracts of the plant have demonstrated antiviral activity against H1N1 influenza in the laboratory.[8] The harvest of this slow-growing plant from the wild for medicinal use may cause its populations to decline.[5]

Protocols for domestication or propagation of the tree are being researched.[5]


  1. ^ Orwa, J. A., et al. (2008). The use of Toddalia asiatica (L) Lam. (Rutaceae) in traditional medicine practice in East Africa. Journal of Ethnopharmacology 115:2 257-62.
  2. ^ "Toddalia asiatica". Germplasm Resources Information Network (GRIN). Agricultural Research Service (ARS), United States Department of Agriculture (USDA). Retrieved 12 January 2018. 
  3. ^ a b c d e Plantz Africa
  4. ^ Njoroge, G.N., et al. (2006). Journal of Ethnobiology and Ethnomedicine.
  5. ^ a b c Nabwami, J., et al. (2007). Characterization of the natural habitat of Toddalia asiatica in the Lake Victoria basin: soil characteristics and seedling establishment. African Crop Science Conference Proceedings Volume 8.
  6. ^ Bussmann, R. W., et al. (2006). Plant use of the Maasai of Sekenani Valley, Maasai Mara, Kenya. J Ethnobiol Ethnomed 2 22.
  7. ^ Oketch-Rabah, H. A., et al. (2000). A new antiplasmodial coumarin from Toddalia asiatica roots. Fitoterapia 71:6 636-40.
  8. ^ Lu, S. Y., et al. (2005). Identification of antiviral activity of Toddalia asiatica against influenza type A virus. Zhongguo Zhong Yao Za Zhi. 30:13 998-1001.