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Kaner or Sweet-scented oleander, Indian oleander


  •  Kingdom- Planate
  •  Division- Tracheophyta
  •  Class- Magnolipsida
  •  Order- Gentianales
  •  Family- Apocynaceae
  •  Genus- Nerium
  •  Species- N. indicum


Nerium indicum is commonly known as Indian oleander or kaner which belongs to Apocynaceae family in the genus Nerium.

Also called Adelfa, Nerium indicum is found throughout the Philippines and parts of Asia including ranges of Himalayas from Nepal to Kashmir.

Indian oleander is a poisonous plant containing various active toxins but has been used externally for ailments.

Plant Description

Nerium is evergreen shrub that grows upto the height of 4 m and bearing leaves all the year around.

The leaves are long, linear-lanceolate, 10-15 cm in length with horizontal nerves.

Flowers are hermaphrodite, white, pink or red in colour, sweet smelled and 4-5 cm in diameter.

Fruit of nerium is long about 15-20 cm, cylindrical and paired growing with the stem.

Seeds contained in fruit are numerous, compressed and white in colour having smooth hairs.


Nerium indicum is distributed all over the Philippines, India and Nepal found on the ranges of 6500 feet.

It is commonly cultivated for its sweet smelling flowers which have medicinal uses.

It prefers hardy zone of 8 with well drained, heavy clayey soils. Basically its habitat is hedgerows, woodlands and gardens.

Parts Used

Whole plant.


Glycoside, oleandrin, tannin, neriin, phytosterin and l-strophnathin, rosaginin and nerlin, volatile oil, fixed oil, neriodorin and neriodorein..


Nerium has various medicinal uses and the leaves and flowers are thought to have actions as tonic, cardio tonic, diaphoretic, diuretic, emetic and expectorant.

Leaves and flowers are also used to treat malaria and as traditional medicine it induces the termination of embryo.

The tincture or decoction is been used externally to reduce swelling and scabies.

The root powder is an external remedy for hemorrhoids and ulcers around genitals.

Leaves and bark is treated as insecticide, rat poison and parasitic.

The plant of Indian oleander is thought to possess anti-cancerous activities.


  •  Adelfa
  •  Baladre
  •  Ceylon Tree
  •  Dog bane
  •  Oleander
  •  Rose bay
  •  South sea rose
  •  Chia-chu-t’ao

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