Analivegam – Alstonia venenata – A Potential Remedy for Snake Bite

Analivegam is an indigenous tree found in the deciduous forests of southern India. Its common name in English is Poison Devil Tree. This small tree is believed to have several medicinal values although a solid study is lacking.

Its scientific name is Alstonia venenata. In Malayalam, the word anali refers to Pit Viper – a group of venomous snakes. So this name might have come from it.

Moreover, some readers have mentioned that the photos given here are of Theeppala instead of Analivegam. As far as I could find out, both the local names refer to the same plant.

Analivegam - Alstonia venenata

Important Facts

Plant Type: Perennial Tree
Family: Apocynaceae
Scientific name: Alstonia venenata

Common Names:
English: Poison Devil Tree
Malayalam: Analivegam, Theeppala

Height: ~15 feet (fully grown)
Flowers: White, 5 petals, fan-shaped, small
Flowering: Spring – Summer

Distribution: mainly indigenous to South India

Analivegam - Alstonia venenata

Potential Medicinal Values

So far, certain tribals in India have been using the various parts of this tree for therapeutic purposes as well as against snake bites.

However, in Ayurveda or in ancient literature, there are no prominent mentions about Alstonia venenata. So, even though some sources refer to its use as an anti-venom due to the presence of an alkaloid called indole, it is not common in the current system of Ayurveda. A study about the phytochemical properties of A.venenata detected the presence of terpenoids as well as various other compounds.

If proper studies or research are done, this could turn out to be another valuable addition to the herbal treasure of the Western Ghats. It can be remedy for snake bites and certain skin diseases.

Analivegam - Alstonia venenata


I got to know about this tree from a relative. Within six years of planting, it was almost 7 feet high. In fact, this perennial tree can reach a height of 15 feet or more. The leaves are lanceolate with jagged edges.

Analivegam - Alstonia venenata - A Potential Cure for Snake Bite


The small and beautiful flowers occur at the end of the branches. They are white and fan-shaped with five petals. There is a circular yellow ring at the center.

Flowers of Analivegam


Primarily being a wild tree of the peninsular forests of southern India, now it cultivated in rural areas, although less common.

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18 thoughts on “Analivegam – Alstonia venenata – A Potential Remedy for Snake Bite

  1. Yes there are many such divine trees, grass and roots. Unfortunately we don't know about them. Recently I came to know about a herb which is useful to cure diabetics. But the person don't know the name of the herb. It is shown by Surya TV. We should try to proliferate this kind of information among the people. The article and the author deserves our appreciation.

  2. You are right.. but I didn't mean we should treat ourselves. There are ayurvedic experts (earlier such people were in common in villages, but now unfortunately, their number is decreasing) who are well – versed in using these medicines. They are able to take out the venom from the body within minutes – even faster than the time taken to rush to a hospital and for the doctor to cure it.

  3. Thank you for sharing it.
    Yes, this kind of information should be spread. Such natural things should be promoted, because these are not getting the importance it deserves.

  4. We used to always have snakes both venomous and non venomous cross our grounds daily. It caused fear as the paths they took were really close to our house and doors and they came in easily.
    Once we planted this particular tree near to our house entrance doors, the snakes travel farther from the tree. We are safer form the snakes now as there is some effect from the presence of these trees near our house

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