Chrozophora tinctoria

Flora Palaestina Ethnobotany

Chrozophora tinctoria (L.) A.Juss.


  • Chrozophora tinctoria (L.) Raf.
  • Dyer's Croton
  • Dyers Litmus
  • Giradol
  • Turnsole
  • ghubeiriya غبيرية
  • leshishit ha-tzaba'im
  • לְשִׁישִׁית הַצַּבָּעִים


  • Disturbed habitats
  • Sand
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Medicinal Complaints / Uses

Chrozophora tinctoria (L.) A.Juss.

System/State Traditional
Activity / Interpretation
Preparation/ Administration
Parts Used
Wound Healing

Antiseptic for skin & wounds


1. Crush dried plant into fine powder & apply to skin.
2. Decoct plant in water, cool, filter & use to wash skin.

Aerial parts Z

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1.Z mentions several other names & uses of Chrozophora tinctoria, an important economic plant which yields a purplish blue dye & is a common weed in cultivated ground in arid zones of Teheran, Afganistan & the Iran-Afghanistan frontier (Helmand) etc. He quotes from published sources (PARSA II, Qual.Pl.Mat.Veg. VI, 1959, No. 1; p.87) on other Persian names which include: "gol-agghrabi " (Shiraz), "gush-garreh" (or ear of lamb : Jahrom of Farsi), "kapoochist" (NE: Helmand), "korki" (Teheran: Mt Bibishahrbanoo), "vasmeh" (East: Mashad: Shandiz)
2. Z notes its use In Mashad for bladder & kidney diseases.
3. Z describes how the dye is used for colouring cheeses, wines, preserves etc. & adds that 10O kg of Chrozophora gives enough juice for dying 25 kg of cloth & that 1 hectacre produces juice for dying 1250 kg of cloth.
4. Z describes from other sources that in 19th century France ancient methods were used to produce the dye; cloth soaked in Crozophora juice was spread on hot horse manure which absorbed ammonia fumes & turned blue. If the juice was diluted with foot water the cloth would turn red or dark green.