Narra is Philippines’ national Tree. It grows widely in the remaining forest and some in urban areas. It is known for its value, in making furniture, timber and lumber. But none of us or only some of us know that narra is also used as medicines by our ancestors.
Narra grows up to a height of 40 meter and can reach up to 1.8 meter in diameter. It is known for its large and irregular fluted trunk. It thrives best in flats and gullies, on moist sandy loam or clay loam soil. It is found in association with dipterocarp species and needs sufficient moisture for its growth.
In ancient medicine, its shredded bark is boiled and the fluid is taken orally for the treatment of dysentery (disease of lower intestine caused by infection with bacteria, protozoan or parasites marked by severe inflammation and the passage of blood and mucus) and diarrhea. Narra extracts were made into herbal teas and pills and were popularized in the Philippines for treating diseases and ailments like leprosy, menstrual pain, flu, rheumatoid arthritis and diabetes. The leaves can also be used to cure small cuts and bruises.
This is the Narra tree, national tree of the Philippines that is not just a simple tree, but with great healing touch.