Couch grass or Bermuda grass [known as “Durva” in Sanskrit and "Durba" in Hindi] is one of the sacred herbs in India. Coming from the family Poacea, the botanical name of Durva is Cynodon dactylon. Durva has haemostatic, cooling, diuretic properties apart from being a good tonic.
Charaka mentioned the white variety of durva under “stanya janaka” or galactogogue. Susrutha mentioned durva under “varnya” or plants which improves the complexion of the skin. Durva also works as “vishaghna” or anti toxin.
Durva grass has a definite place in Hindu mythology as well. Hindu mythology mentions that Lord Ganesha was relieved of the burning sensation in his stomach by eating durva grass offered by Saint Kashyap. Thus, Durva becomes one of the sacred offerings for Lord Ganesha.
Durva (also called Dhub grass) is a prostate, extensively creeping perennial grass, highly branched and rooting at every node. The leaves are narrow and linear and the flowers green or brinjal coloured. The whole plant can be used for medicinal purpose. It reduces kapha dosha and pitha dosha.
Durva swadvihimatiktham kashayam jeevani jayeth
Kapha pittasra visarpa thrishna daaha twagaamayal
These lines in Sanskrit mean that it pacifies the diseases due to the dominancy of kapha and pitta dosha, is also a diuretic, is useful in treating visarpa (a type of skin disease), burning sensation of the body, excessive thirst, arrests bleeding, and acts as a laxative in high doses.
Indications of Bermuda Grass
Chronic skin conditions
The Medicinal Uses of Bermuda Grass
In epistaxis or bleeding through the nose: nasya using the powdered grass can be done.
Eczema or skin diseases: prepare medicated oil by boiling in coconut oil a handful of dhub grass, a few sticks of liquorice and apply it daily before bath.
In infertility: taking half a cup of the juice of dhub grass every day is said to correct reproductive disorders and facilitate conception. It also prevents abortions
In urinary disorders: being highly diuretic, the diluted and sweetened juice of durva clears urinary obstruction and establishes free flow of urine.
As a brain tonic: durva is known for its intellect promoting properties and is a component of many a brain tonic preparation. The fresh juice is taken 1ounce every day.
Bleeding from wounds: apply the paste of this dhub grass and tie; it helps to arrest bleeding.
Bleeding piles: drink the milk boiled with dhub grass.
Drinking 10ml of the fresh juice extracted from dhub grass daily helps in increasing the strength and functioning of the joints.
Dandruff: applying durvadi oil on scalp cures itching and dandruff
Dhub grass along with sesame and the flowers of Lucas aspera made into a paste using milk and butter should be applied on the diabetic carbuncles .
“Durvadi tailam”,“Drone durvadi tailam”, and “Doorvaadyam ghritam” are major Ayurvedic formulations using durva.
Durva is considered safe when used in the recommended dosages.