| synonyms = *Asparagus rigidulus Nakai Nepal, Sri Lanka, India and the Himalayas. It grows tall and prefers to take root in gravelly, rocky soils high up in piedmont plains, at elevation. It was botanically described in 1799. Because of its multiple uses, the demand for Asparagus racemosus is constantly on the rise. Because of destructive harvesting, combined with habitat destruction, and deforestation, the plant is now considered "endangered" in its natural habitat. Shatawari has different names in the different Indian languages, such as shatuli, vrishya and other terms. In Nepal it is called kurilo. The name "shatawari" means "curer of a hundred diseases" (shatum: "hundred"; vari: "curer").
Leaves, flowers and fruitsSatavari has small pine-needle-like phylloclades (photosynthetic branches) that are uniform and shiny green. In July, it produces minute, white flowers on short, spiky stems, and in September it fruits, producing blackish-purple, globular berries.
RootsIt has an adventitious root system with tuberous roots that measure about one metre in length, tapering at both ends, with roughly a hundred on each plant.
UsesAsparagus racemosus is an important plant in traditional medicine in tropical and subtropical India. Its medicinal use has been reported in the Indian and British Pharmacopoeias and in traditional systems of medicine such as Ayurveda, Unani and Siddha. Asparagus racemosus (Shatavari) is recommended in Ayurvedic texts for the prevention and treatment of gastric ulcers and dyspepsia, and as a galactogogue. A. racemosus has also been used by some Ayurvedic practitioners for nervous disorders. The roots are used in Ayurvedic medicine, following a regimen of processing and drying. It is generally used as a uterine tonic, as a galactogogue (to improve breast milk), in hyperacidity, and as a best general health tonic.
Chemical constituentsAsparagamine A, a polycyclic alkaloid was isolated from the dried roots The Ley Group: Combinatorial Chemistry and total synthesis of natural products and subsequently synthesized to allow for the construction of analogs. Total Synthesis Of The Antitumor Agent Asparagamine A retrieved 11-02-2011 Steroidal saponins, shatavaroside A, shatavaroside B, filiasparoside C, shatavarins, immunoside, and schidigerasaponin D5 (or asparanin A) were isolated from the roots of Asparagus racemosus. Also known is the isoflavone 8-methoxy-5,6,4'-trihydroxyisoflavone 7-O-β-D-glucopyranoside.
- Shatavar Vatika Herbal Park, Hisar, Haryana—a herbal park in India for the research, preservation and propagation of Shatavari
- Nice picture of A. racemosus flowers from "Flowers of India" website
- USDA GRIN
- Contains a detailed monograph on Asparagus racemosus (Shatavari) as well as a discussion of health benefits and usage in clinical practice. Available online at https://web.archive.org/web/20101001013838/http://www.toddcaldecott.com/index.php/herbs/learning-herbs/331-shatavari