Kurunthotti is an annual herb or shrub with yellow flowers and leaves with distinct shapes. Know by the name Bala in Sanskrit, it is quite useful in Ayurveda and traditional medicines., 20-120 cm tall. Branches, leaf-stalked and flower-stalks are are velvety mixed with spreading hairs. Leaves are velvety on both surfaces, mixed with simple hairs on the nerves beneath. Flowers arise in leaf axils, singly or paired or more in terminal branches. Fruit is disc-shaped, 5-8 mm across, velvety in the upper half, splitting open. The seeds and root are used to make medicine.
Kurunthotti is the main ingredient in several Ayurvedic medicines like Dhanwantaram, Balataila, and Balarishtam. Traditionally, it has been used since early times to prepare herbal shampoos (thaali) to treat hair problems and to promote the growth of healthy hair and maintain color. The roots of the kurunthotti are used to cure fever.