Shaggy Buttonweed
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Shaggy Buttonweed
P Native Photo: Preetha P.S.
Common name: Shaggy Buttonweed • Hindi: मदनघंटी Madanaghanti • Kannada: Daare Botu, Madana buddame gida, Madana Ganti • Malayalam: Kudalchurukki, Nattachuri, Natthachoori, Tartaval, Tharthavel • Marathi: Gedo, घंटाची भाजी Ghantachi-bhaji • Nepali: गनेली झार Ganele Jhar • Tamil: Chirakkuli, Chirakkulicceti • Telugu: Madana, Madana kaada
Botanical name: Spermacoce hispida    Family: Rubiaceae (Coffee family)
Synonyms: Borreria hispida, Spermacoce rigida, Spermacoce mutilata

Shaggy Buttonweed is a annual or perennial herb, prostrate to weakly rising up, up to 50 cm tall; stems hairy. Leaves are stalkless to shortly stalked; leaf-stalk up to 4 mm, blade drying papery to leathery, oblong-elliptic, obovate, or spoon-shaped, 1-3 x 0.5-1.5 cm, both surfaces hairy to rough bristly, hairy, base wedge-shaped to blunt and usually long decurrent, margin often curled, fringed with hairs, tip pointed, blunt, or rounded; secondary veins 2-4 pairs or not visible. Flowers are borne in leaf-axils, in clusters 0.5-1.5 cm in diameter, with 1-6 flowers per axil. Flowers are pink, purple, or white, funnel-shaped, tube 2.5-4.5 mm, petals elliptic-oblong, lanceshaped, or triangular, 1-1.8 mm. Sepal-cup is hairy, sepals 4, linear-lanceshaped to narrowly triangular, 1-1.5 mm, fringed with hairs. Bracts are linear or infrequently stipule-like, 1-5 mm. Capsules are ellipsoid to nearly spherical, 2.5-5 x 2.5-3.5 mm, hairy. Shaggy Buttonweed is found in India, Himalayas, Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Sri Lanka, Vietnam, Australia.
Medicinal uses: According to the tribal community in Kerala along the Western Ghats, the seeds of this plant can cure internal injuries of nerves and kidneys, purify the blood, shed markings of old age, and improve vitality.

Identification credit: Preetha P.S. Photographed in Kollam, Kerala.

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