Has anybody among you ever seen a Dadiangas Tree, the plant from which Gen. Santos City was used to be named after?
I have. And that was just over a year ago when someone told me that one can be found near the flagpole of the Gen. Santos Park across the city hall building. I lost no time in looking for the elusive plant and upon locating it, found out a few things.
First, I discovered that Dadiangas is not actually a tree but a shrub, a very thorny shrub. Second, it has little yellow flowers and small marble-size fruits.
When General Paulino Santos arrived here in 1939 along with the first batch of settlers from Luzon, all they can see were hectares and hectares of arable land all ready to be cultivated and planted.
And of course, as the story goes, they also found out that there were a lot of these Dadiangas shrubs dotting the prairie that they decided to name it after the place.
Now, there’s just this lone Dadiangas shrub at the Gen. Santos Park which has been fenced off to protect it from peeing men and animals. It stands about 8 feet tall but you would hardly notice it because it looks like a very ordinary plant.
According to some, a few Dadiangas trees can still be found at the farms at the city’s rural barangays, mostly at the pasture leased areas.
Now, only a few people call the city founded 60 years ago as Dadiangas, preferring to call it by its modern name, GENSAN. The four downtown barangays of the city however are called Barangay Dadiangas South, Dadiangas North, Dadiangas East and Dadiangas West.
I just wish that the local government or some private group put a distinct marker near the surviving Dadiangas tree at the Gen. Paulino Santos Park so that the “generals” and visitors will easily discover for themselves this lowly-looking and thorny but historical plant from which their beloved city was first named after. Am pretty sure it will be their first time to do so.
How about you? Have you ever seen a Dadiangas shrub?
I just found out that the Filipino name of the Dadiangas bush is TALONGON.
SCIENTIFIC NAME: SOLANUM TORVUM.
OTHER NAMES: Tandang Aso, Balbalusa, Gambol, Dagutung, Talampay, Talimbolo, Talongon, Talong-talongon, Talungkia, Taogotan
· A coarse, erect, branched suffrutescent herb, 1 to 3 m high, the branches with short scattered spines, most parts of the body covered with stellate-shaped hairs.
· Leaves: alternate, ovate to oblong-ovate, 10 to 20 cm long, wavy-lobed, acuminate, base inequilateral.
· Flowers: inflorescence lateral, usually extra axillary racemose, often dichotomous. Flowers, many, white, about 1 cm long. Corolla tube short, the limb 5-lobed. Stamens 4, the filaments short, the anthers united into a cone. Ovary 2-celled.
· Fruits: globose, yellow, glabrous, about 1 cm in diameter.
In most islands and provinces, in wastelands at low and medium altitudes, flowering all year round.
· Wash thoroughly and cut into slices before sun-drying.
Antipyretic, antirheumatic, antiphlogistic, anti-infectious, anti-contusion, anti-inflammation and analgesic.
· For stomach ache, pain caused by contusion, internal bruise on the belly muscle – use 15 to 30 gms of dried drug. Boil to decoction and drink.
· Indigestion, gastric pain at the navel.
· Rheumatism-numbness, sprain contusion, lumbar muscular pains.
· Decoction used in some areas (Bukidnon) to lessen postpartum hemorrhage.
· Dosage: 15 to 30 gms dried roots in decoction, or processed into syrup or alcoholic suspension.