Family • Equisetaceae - Equisetum ramosissimum Desf. - BRANCHED HORSETAIL

Scientific names

Equisetum ramosissimum Desf,
Equisetum elongatum Willd,
Equisetum ramosum DC,
Hippochaete ramosissima (Desf.) Bomer.
Equisetum debile Roxb. ?

Other vernacular names

INDONESIA: Bibitungan, Rumput betung, Tropogan.
SPANISH: Cola de caballo, Equiseto.
THAILAND: Ya nguak, Ya thot bong, Ya hu nuak.
VIETNAM: C[or] d[oos]t.

Common names

Putod, sumbok (Buk.)
Puputod (Ig.)
Pututud (Ig.)
Sumbok (Buk.)
Branched horsetail (Engl.)
Branched scouring brush (Engl.)

Putod is a perennial herbs, with jointed and branched rootstock. Roots are in whorls from the nodes.
Stem is hollow and noding, the length of the internode 2 to 6 centimeters with longitudinal striations at the surface. Leaves are obsolete, reduced to scales around the node. Cones (strobili) are oblong, green-yellow in color depending on maturity, terminal or spirally borne on the tip of the stem.

The species differs from Equisetum debile in that the fertile stems are much branched, and are grooved and rough.

Probably widely distributed throughout the Philippines at medium, to high altitudes (about 1,000 to 6,000 ft above sea level). Usually found along exposed stream embankments on sandy to stony soil. Easily overlooked because it blends with grassy landscape. Easily grown in ordinary garden soil.

Additional Sources and Suggested Readings

(1) Free radical scavenging activity of three Equisetum species from Fruska gora mountain / Fitoterapia / 2006, vol. 77, no7-8, pp. 601-60

(2) A Review on the Potential Uses of Ferns / M Mannar Mannan, M Maridass and B Victor / Ethnobotanical Leaflets 12: 281-285. 2008.

(3) Equisetum ramosissimum Desf. / Vernacular names / GLOBinMED

(4) Toxicity and diuretic activity of an ethanol extract of Equisetum ramosissimum D. / E. Navarro / La Laguna University, Pharmacology 38071, Spain


Parts utilized
· Stem.
· Collected year round.
· Rinse, cut into pieces, and dry under the sun.

– Sweet and slightly bitter tasting.
– Cleanses the liver and clears the eyesight.
– Diuretic and astringent.

• Hypertension, reddening and swelling pain in the eye, pterygium of the cornea.
• Used for diarrhea, jaunditic hepatitis, and renal lithiasis.
• Dosage: 15 to 30 gms of dried material in decoction.
• In China, decoction of whole plant used from wounds and ulcers. Also, used as antitussive and diuretic.
• In India, used as cooling medicine for gonorrhea.


Study Findings
• Antioxidant: Study on scavenger activities of three equisetum species, including E ramosissimum, showed E telmatela to have the most scavenger and antioxidant activity.
• Diuretic / Toxicity / CNS Depressive Activity: An ethanol extract administered to Swiss albino mice showed moderate level of toxicity and central nervous depressive properties. The ethanol extract also exhibited an interesting diuretic activity in male Sprague-Daley rats when administered orally and intraperitoneally.