Calotropis Plant, a Desert Beauty and a Future Hope

Some plants are very well known with the power of resistance, sustainability and adaptation to the challenging climatic conditions and hard terrians. One of those unique plants is the Calotropis.

Calotropis in Bolossom, Alain, UAE

The healthier and fresh shine of the leaves and flowers attract the attention of the desert’s visitor, especially when the visitor is an explorer. Many people know this plant only as a source of poison, unedible and uselss but to me it is an asset of biodiversity, treasure of healing molecules and food for some animals like goat, deers, and some beetles and other insetcts. The flowers are a rich source of the nectar both for the humming birds and the bees along with other insects.

The amazing beauty of the Calotropis

Calotrops plant had been using by the indigenous healers for different health problems both in animals and the human. Raikas traditionally drink camel milk from a folded aak leaf; aak (Calotropis procera) produces a milky resin and, sometimes, the tip of the leaf is broken so that this resin will mix with the camel milk, improving its health effects. Raika herdsmen may subsist on camel milk for weeks at a time during long migrations.

A Raika camel herder is drinking camel milk in a Calotropis leaf

The milk of the clotropis plant is also use for dermititis and injuries healing both in animals and the humanbeing. The leaves and also the milk of the plants work as insect repellents. I have personal experience using calotropis leaf as insect repellent, which really works. The leaves especially work in the treatment of the wounds in the camels.

Personally, I’m in love with the beauty and strength of this unique flora. I’m quite sure that this plant will play a very crucial role in the health and wellbeing of human and Mother Earth at large. The beauty glittering flowers and shiny leaves attract the attention of a desert explorer and give a great calmness to the soul.

Let we try to understand the nature, beauty and treasures hidden, and to care our Mother Earth. Please respect the health of the nature, do not throwing rubbish and plastic in the beautiful deserts. Try to understand, each flora and fauna on the desert is part of the whole cycle of the nature, if one of them is diminsh the whole cycle will affect.

13 replies

  1. What an interesting and beautifully presented post, Dr Raziq. The photos are of great value here because allow seeing the real beauty of this unique plant. I will keep this post safe, and use it with your permission when I will write about pollution. Than you.


    Liked by 3 people

  2. This is future natural pesticide DOC and our next step after second generation liquid fertilizers launching will be natural pesticides from our indigenius plants including ukk under Al-Muqeet Lab (Pvt) Limited Lahore Insha Allah.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Doc, please try to see What Al-Muqeet lab is providing as this is really good for the the small ruminant Hemonchosis besides other herbal treatments!

    Liked by 2 people

  4. I have used it, we also call it aak. In our area, it is used as a medicine. As a child, I used to play with its flowers.
    I don’t know that aak is also found in deserts.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Calotropis is a poisonous plant, and therefore not browed by livestock. However, it is a folk remedy and used for the treatment of a number of ailments. It is definitely a desert beauty with its large leaves, bunches of fragrant flowers. The silky fibers around its seeds are highly prized for making expensive cloth ( never seen one). A good host for monarch butterflies. It has a wide distribution, and the species in Pakistan is Calotropis Procera. It will be great to hear from Prof Kakar and new information which makes it a ‘Future hope’.

    Response from Javed Ahmed USA.


  6. First of all, I’m really very happy to see your such a detailed response with great knowledge. Calitropis is a very potent plant in the desert.
    The first and the top known potential is the fixing/dumping of CO2. Also, it is an oxygen-producing factory. The beauty, large leaf, beautiful flowers, beautiful shade, eyecatching beauty in the dry desert, etc are all its qualitative traits but it is also consumed by some livestock like goats. Also, the leaves are consumed by deers, rodents, hares, and other desert fauna including insects. The nectars are consumed by the beautiful desert bird ‘sunbird’ and the bush provides habitat to very diverse animal genetic resources.
    The future hope is its power of resilience against global warming and possible pharmaceutical use as it had been used as a medicine since unknown times.
    The people in Thar traditionally drink camel milk in Calotropis’s leaf.

    My response to Javed Ahmed.


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