To the eyes of many, weeds crawling around the yard are plants that are to be pulled out when cleaning around the house.This however is not the case for some in Solomon Islands who value some weeds which they use as traditional medicine to cure sickness in the absence of tablets.
Speaking to Solomon Times, Meleni Genitalea who hails from East Kwaio of Malaita Province, pointed out a particular weed that is common, stating that in their village, it is used as herbal medicine to cure dysentery.
"We call it the aitotognala and it is the first thing our people turn to when down with minor or severe dysentery," Mr. Genitalea explained.
"Any person with dysentery should take the aitotognala before having his or her meal and for those with a severe case, it is the requirement that the person takes the herbal medicine two to three times a day."
Asked on how it is prepared, Mr. Genitalea said that the fruit particles, "or lodona in our language" is taken out of the plant, placed on a spoon and add a little bit of water for the person to take.
"The aitotognala is the best and fastest herbal medicine to cure dysentery and this is not only common among our people, we have had people from other provinces trying it and can confirm that," he said.
He added that in some ways, going back to the basics of herbal medicine can be very useful "especially in places where there's no easy access to clinics".