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Common Leucas
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Common Leucas
ative lanceshaped Photo: Thingnam Girija
Common name: Common Leucas • Hindi: छोटा हल्कुसा Chhota halkusa, गॊफा Gophaa • Manipuri: ꯃꯌꯡꯂꯝꯕꯨꯝ Mayanglambum • Marathi: Tamba • Tamil: தும்பை Thumbai • Malayalam: Tumba • Telugu: తుమ్మి చెట్టు Thummi chettu, Tummachettu • Kannada: Tumbe guda • Bengali: Ghal ghase • Oriya: Bhutamari • Konkani: Tumbo • Sanskrit: द्रोणपुष्पी Dronapushpi • Nepali: गुम्मा Gummaa, दनेफु Danephu, द्रोणपुश्पि Dronapushpi, गुमपाते Gumapaate
Botanical name: Leucas aspera    Family: Lamiaceae (Mint family)

Common Leucas is an erect and diffusely branched annual herb. Flower are borne in distant spherical whorls, in uppermost leaf axils, 1-4, about 2.5 cm in diameter, about 16-20-flowered. Flowers are 8-10 mm white; upper lip short, densely bearded; lower lip clearly longer than upper and projecting forward. Sepal-cup is 7-9 mm, scarcely elongating in fruit, pale green, scarcely curved, with a prominently oblique mouth. Sepal teeth are 8-10, irregular in size, triangular, 2-3 mm long with short spinulose tips. Bracts narrow linear, about 1/2 length of calyces, long-fringed with hairs at margins. Stems are 15-30 cm with spreading short hairs. Leaves linear to linear lanceshaped, weakly rounded toothed to subentire at margins, wedge-shaped above and below; up to 5 x 1.5 cm with adpressed hairs on upper surface and a denser indumentum of short spreading hairs below especially on nerves; leaf-stalk subabsent to about 5 mm on lower leaves. Common Leucas is found in India, Himalayas, and broadly in Subtropical Asia.
Medicinal uses: A popular Pot Herb believed to help develop resistance to fight diseases.

Identification credit: Tabish Photographed in Manipur.

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