Botanical name Azadirachta indica A. Juss
Synonyms Melia azadirachta Linn.
English Margosa tree
Occurrence & Distribution
Commonly cultivated in various parts of India, including village shrubberies. Grows wild in sub- Himalayan tract and forests of other areas
A large tree up to 18 meter high with almost a straight trunk. Leaves pinnate , crowed at the ends of branches, leaflets 5-15 , opposite , subopposite or alternate , lanceolate , acuminate, serrate or dentate, glabrous. Flowers numerous , white , honey scented . Fruit 1- seeded drupes, oblong, yellow when ripe. Seeds contain oil. Flowers in February- April and fruits during June- August.
Fruits, seeds, flowers, leaves, twigs and bark
About 100 compounds , mostly triterpenoids of protolimonoids, limonoids, tetranortriterpenoid-y-hydroxy butenolides, pentanortriterpenoids, a hexaanortriterpenoid apart from a few nontriterpenoid constituents have been reported.
The plant is regarded as the ‘ village dispensary ‘ in India because of the use of all its parts for various ailments in the indigenous system of medicine as follows
Fruits- ( berries ) antiperiodic, anthelmintic, astringent, emollient, purgative and tonic, beneficial in piles and in urinary diseases
Seeds- oil- antiseptic, locally used in eczema and leprosy, in common dermatosis and rheumatism
Kernel- Oil known as oil of Margosa or neem oil possesses antifertility, antifungal, antimicrobial, and antiseptic properties, active against both gram positive and gram negative organisms, useful in chronic skin diseases, leprosy, and ulcers. Common external application for rheumatism and sprains. Warm oil relieves ear, dental, and gum troubles . Hair oil containing oil of margosa prevents baldness and graying of hair
Flowers- stomachic and tonic
Leaves– antifungal, antiperiodic , antiseptic, and antiviral, applied in the form of poultice in boils, abscesses, adenitis, eczema and ulcers. Hot infusion anodyne for fomenting bruises, sprains and swollen glands, antiseptic, tender leaves with Piper nigrum used for intestinal helminthiasis . Essential oil from the fresh leaves has a mild fungicidal action
Twigs – Widely used as tooth brush for its antipyrorrhoeal property, carminative and digestive
Bark- stem and root- antiemetic, antiperiodic, antihelmintic, astringent, hypoglycemic and tonic.Useful in anorexia, colic, liver disorders , malaria and sprue, good remedy for pyresis
Sap- from the stem tip- beneficial in consumption , atonic dyspepsia , debility and in skin diseases, refrigerant, nutritive and tonic
Gum– known as East India Gum, demulcent, stimulant and tonic . Beneficial in catarrh and splenic enlargement
Dose– Bark powder 1-2 gms, leaf juice- 12-14 cc, oil- 4-10 drops
Formulations- Nimbadichurna, Nimbarishta, Nimbaharidra