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CORDYLINE ROXBURGHIANA (Schultes) Merr.

TIGRE

Sansevieria roxburghiana Schultes


Sansevieria zeylanica Roxb.
Cordyline hyacinthoides W.F. Wight

Local names; Aspi-aspi (Pamp.); baniat (Is.); dildila (Ilk.); kakarohai (Ibn.);
pakarohai (Ibn.); rabo de leon (Sp.); rabo de tigre (Sp.); sigre (Is.); tigre (Sp.,
Tag.); bowstring hemp (Eng.).

Tigre is often cultivated, though in many regions of the Philippines it is


neutralized, occurring in thickets and hedges at low and medium altitudes. It is a
native of tropical Asia, now pantropic is cultivation.

The rootstock is very stout, branching, and stoloniferous. The stem is very
short. The leaves are erect, fleshy, fibrous, flat (in other varieties cylindrical or
concave above, and rounded dorsally), suberect, dagger-shaped, rigid, pale
green, with transverse bands of dark green, or dark green with gray mottles, 0.4
to 1.5 meters long, 4 to 7 centimeters wide. The scape is erect, 30 to 80
centimeters long. The flowers, in fascicles of 3 to 6, are numerous, pale-straw-
colored, and sweet-scented, 2.5 to 3 centimeters long, with the perianth
segments nearly twice as long as the tube. The fruit, which is sparingly produced,
is globose, about 8 millimeters in diameter. The seeds are broadly ovoid, and
white, with horny albumen.

From the leaves of tigre are obtained strong fibers, which are sometimes
mixed with pia locally. From the fibers of the leaves, bowstring, cordage, cloth,
and paper are made.

Chopra reports that the plant contains, besides other components, an


active constituent: an alkaloid, sansevierine.

According to Guerrero the leaves, when roasted, are used as an emollient.


Kirtikar and Basu declare that the rootstocks are prescribed as a cough medicine
in India. The juice of the tender shoots is administered to children to clear their
throats of viscid phlegm. Chopra adds that it is used as a purgative, a tonic, and
a febrifuge in India.