Family • Flagellariaceae - Flagellaria indica Linn. - WHIP VINE - Xu ye teng

Scientific names

Flagellaria indica Linn.
Flagellaria philippinensis Elm.
Flagellaria minor Bl.
Palmijuncus laevis Rumph.
Xu ye teng (Chin.)

Common names

Anuad (Ilk.) Iñgula (Tag.) Tinuung (Ibn.)
Arayan (Tag.) Inual (Pang.) Uag (Sul., Bis., Bag., Nik.)
Auai (Iv.) Kala-uai (Ibn.) Uai-ti-uak (Ilk.)
Auai-si=gayang (Is.) Kala-uaiuai (Ibn.) Uak (Bis.)
Baling-uai (Tag., Pamp.) Ouag-uai (Bik.) Venagaiang (Is.)
Boboaya (Mbo.) Ouag-ouag ((Mbo.) Whip vine (Engl.)
Hoag-uai (Nik.) Paua (P. Bis.) Bush cane (Engl)
Huag (S. L. Bis., Mbo.) Sagakap (P. Bis.) False rattan (Engl.)
Huak (Bis.) Taua (P. Bis.) Bian teng (Chin.)
Iñgual (Ilk.)


Additional Sources and Suggested Readings

(1) The folk healers-sorcerers of Siquijor / Rolando V. Mascuñana, Evelyn Fuentes Mascuñana

(2) Medicinal Plants used by various Ethnic Groups in Sabah, Malaysian Borneo / Fasihuddin Ahmad / Faculty of Resource Science and technology, Universiti Malaysia Sarawak (UNIMAS)

(3) Maternity and medicinal plants in Vanuatu / I. The cycle of reproduction / G Bourdy and A Walter / Journal of Ethnopharmacology, 37 (1992) 179-196 / Elsevier Scientific Publishers Ireland Ltd.

(4) Vines & climbers / Mangrove Guidebook for Southeast Asia Part 2

(5) Effect of Thai Medicinal Plant Extracts against Dengue Virus in vitro / N. Klawikkan, V. Nukoolkarn, N. Jirakanjanakit, S. Yoksan, C. Wiwat1 and K. Thirapanmethee* / Mahidol University Journal of Pharmaceutical Sciences

Baling-uai is a reedlike plant, climbing night on trees through the leaf tendrils. Stem is about 2.5 centimeters thick towards the base, terete and smooth. Leaves are sessile, 15 to 25 centimeters long, variable in breadth, 2 to 4 centimeters or more, lanceolate from a rounded base and terminating in a curled tendril at the apex. Flowers are white, borne in clusters, shortly pedunculated, with irregular laxly branched panicles, 15 to 30 centimeters long. Outer perianth-segments are broadly ovate or suborbicular, and the inner segments similar, more or less unequal. Fruits are rounded and smooth, red when mature, about 5 millimeters in diameter.

– From Batanes Islands to Mindanao and Palawan, in all or most islands and provinces, in secondary forests at low and medium altitudes.
– Also occurs in tropical Africa, and in tropical Asia through Malaya to tropical Australia and the Marianne Islands.


– Stems and rhizomes are diuretic.
– Leaves are astringent and vulnerary.

Parts used 
Stem, rhizome, leaves.


– Decoction of stems and rhizome used as diuretic.
– Leaves are astringent and vulnerary.
– Plaster of leaves used on wounds.
– Tips of leaves applied to sore eyes.
– Young leaves used for making hairwash and to promote hairgrowth.
– Decoction of flowers and leaves used as diuretic.
– Used for postpartum baths. (See: Suob)
– Reported use of leaves for contraception.
– In Malaysia, boiled root is taken three times daily as health tonic. The Murut tribe in Sabah boil the whole plant and use the water as a bath for semi-paralytic conditions.
– In Malaysian Borneo, decoction of roots taken for influenza, cough and vomiting.
– In Vanuatu, to induce infertility, a handful of leaf buds are crushed with water and salt; to drink a glass of the juice before breakfast, to continue for the following four days.
• The “huwag” vine from Flagellaria indica is used in the mananambal’s Lenten rituals of producing curative concoctions and brews for sorcery.
• Weaving: Sometimes used for basketry, but of inferior quality to rattan. Also used in making fish traps, nets and rope.

Study Findings
• Anti-Dengue Activity: Study investigated the in-vitro anti-dengue activity of Thai medicinal plants. Results showed ethanol extracts of Flagellaria indica exhibited in-vitro inhibitory activity on DENV-2. Results suggest a potential for medicinal plants in the development of anti-DENV drug.