Chocolate Weed
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Chocolate Weed
ative Photo: Syed Parvez
Common name: Chocolate Weed, Wire bush, Redweed • Hindi: Tikiokra, Bilpat, चित्रबीज chitrabee • Marathi: लहान मेथुरी Lahan methuri • Tamil: பிண்ணாக்குக்கீரை Punnakkukkirai • Malayalam: Ketam • Telugu: Ganugapindikura • Kannada: Bettadatutti mara • Bengali: Bon-pat, Tikiokra • Oriya: Dasokerotan • Nepali: बन पाते Ban Paate, पटुवा झार Patuwaa Jhaar, फुली झार Phuli Jhaar
Botanical name: Melochia corchorifolia    Family: Sterculiaceae (Cacao family)
Synonyms: Melochia erecta, Sida cuneifolia, Melochia affini

Chocolate Weed is an erect branched herbs. Flower are pink with a greenish-yellow center, with 5 petals which are 2-4 mm long, obovate, blunt or flat at tip. Flowers are also sometimes white with a greenish-yellow center. Stamens are 5, filaments united at base. Flowers are borne in compact clusters at branch-ends. Bracts 2-3 mm long, linear-lanceshaped, fringed with hairs on margins. Calyx 5-lobed, bell-shaped, 2-3 mm long; sepals lanceshaped, fringed with hairs, Young stem, leaf-stalks, bracts and sepals star-shaped hairy mixed with simple hairs. Leaves varying a lot in size and shape, 2-5 x 1-2.5 cm, ovate-oblong, heart-shaped or narrowed at base, margin sawtoothed, pointed at tip, sparsely hairy on nerves on both sides, leaf-stalks up to 1 cm long. Capsule 3-4 mm, sub - spherical, 5- valved. Seeds angular or plano-convex, dark brown or greyish.

Identification credit: Dinesh Valke Photographed in Chhattisgarh & Maharashtra.

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