Alstonia scholaris, commonly called blackboard tree or devil's tree in English, is an evergreen tropical tree in the family Apocynaceae. t is native to southern China, tropical Asia, and Australasia.
It grows at various altitudes, up to 2900 meters above sea level.It grows near the coast, in mangrove forests and mixed forests.It usually develops on ridges and slopes with sand to clay soils.It also grows on calcareous and basic soils.
Always green tree originating in South-East Asia, China, India, and Australia. Up to 40mt high with baldness leaves that bloom in October producing small scented white flowers.
The seeds are oblong with ciliated margins ending with a tape of 2 cm long hair. The bark is bitter with lactescent lymph.
Genus epithet ‘Alstonia named after Scottish naturalist Dr. Charles Alston (1685-1760), who was a professor of botany at University of Edinburgh, scientific writer and keeper of King’s garden at Holyrood, and one of the few botanists who resisted the Linnaean taxonomic classification when it was introduced.
The type species Alstonia scholaris was originally named Echites scholaris by Linnaeus in 1767.
Use and effect
The uses of the devil's claw mainly include treatment with natural remedies for headache, back pain, neck pain, arthritis, and tendonitis.
The use of devil's claw gel and other natural remedies based on devil's claw is recommended as an adjunct in case of rheumatoid arthritis, inflammatory rheumatism, bruises, tendonitis, back pain, sciatica, and more.
Let's not forget, for example, a stiff neck and other muscle pains. The dry extract obtained from the devil's claw root is useful in case of gout to promote the elimination of uric acid.
African populations have known the properties of the devil's claw for centuries, so much so that this natural remedy was used to heal wounds and to soothe joint pain. In addition, the devil's claw was attributed to digestive and therapeutic properties for gastrointestinal problems.