Scientific name: Barosma betulina

Common names: Bucku, Bookoo, Bucco, Buku

Ayurvedic names:

Chinese names:

Bangladesh names:

Arabic names:    الـبوكـو (al buko)

Rain Forest names:

Family: Fabaceae?

Approximate number of species known:

Common parts used: Leaf

Collection: It is often collected while fruiting and flowering

Annual/Perennial: Perennial

Height: 2 to 3 feet

Actions: Urinary antiseptic, anti-lithic, diahproetic, tonic

Known Constituents: Oil including diospheol, limonene and methone

Constituents Explained:


An African herb that is thought of primarily as a herb for the kidneys, especially to soothe through the urinary tract.  It is commonly employed when an antispetic is needed through the urinary tract. Used for infections, the uthrea and the prostate.  Its used to relive burning or painful urination. An increase in urine production is usually attributed to the oil.

Buchu leaves should never be boiled.1   When it’s warm it can produce perspiration and is used for the prostate and urethra, as is commonly combined with equal parts of uva-ursi.

Traditional Use:

Clinical Studies:


Source material:


Herb Name: Buchu

Other names: Bucku

Latin name: Barosma betulina

Family: N.O. Rutaceae

Common part used: Leaves

Buchu is a group of shrubs with aromatic properties that are found solely in South Africa. These days cultivation is carried out of two major species, mainly for the extracted oils. One of these species, Agathosma betulina, has been used by the local population to cure stomach and urinary problems for hundreds of years. This practice really has a scientific basis – the phenolic compounds extracted from the leaves have proven diuretic properties and function as an effective antiseptic as well.

The Buchu plant has leathery and shiny leaves – these are pale green and slightly more than an inch long, and half as wide. The leaves have a curving tip and a toothed edge, and there are round glands that contain oils at different points on the leaves – these give the leaves an aromatic taste and their distinctive peppermint smell. The plant has small white flowers, each with five petals, and brown fruit.

The gathering of the leaves is generally done in the flowering and fruit season. The gathered leaves are dried for export. Most Buchu is imported by London firms, and thence is exported to America.

There is considerable restriction over the harvesting of Buchu by the government of South Africa, this to protect the plant species from extinction, as would otherwise inevitably happen. Only those with a special license may harvest Buchu in South Africa.

Buchu is used in medicine in Great Britain and America, and also in the production of various flavors and perfumes. On of the main constituents of Buchu is diosphenol, which is an antiseptic. Most of the rest of Buchu consists of oil and mucilage. It has been used as a treatment for urinary problems in Great Britain since the year 1821.