English name: Rue, Aruvatha, Herb of Grace, Common Rue
Malay name: Daun Garuda (Daun Busuk)
Chinese name: 臭草

“A rare medicinal plant with various health benefits”.

Botanical name: Ruta graveolens
Family: Rutaceae

Description: A strongly aromatic, woody perennial shrub.

Therapeutic category: Traditional tonic


  • menstrual disorders (used as emmenagogue)
  • spasms (used as antispasmodic)
  • loss of appetite
  • dyspeptic complaints
  • circulatory disorders
  • fever
  • high blood pressure
  • heart palpitations
  • inflamed mucosa
  • toothache
  • hysteria
  • arthritis
  • sprains
  • injuries
  • skin diseases
  • used as carminative
  • used as stimulant

Preparation and dosage:

Dried leaves (rutae folium) or dried aboveground parts (rutae herba)

  • Bruised leaves can be placed on tooth to reduce pain
  • Bruised leaves can be placed in the ears to alleviate pain
  • Extreme care is required as high doses is toxic and abortive plus rue can cause photodermatitis

Fresh plants

  • Cooked as a sweet soup dessert (traditional Chinese dessert)
  • Made into oilment to ‘protect’ babies (traditional Malay usage)