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ntroduced Photo: Thingnam Girija
Common name: Stevia, Sweet Leaf, Sweet Honey Leaf
Botanical name: Stevia rebaudiana    Family: Asteraceae (Sunflower family)
Synonyms: Eupatorium rebaudianum

Stevia is a herbaceous perennial, which is normally used as a natural herbal sweetener. It is native to Brazil, Venezuela, Colombia and Paraguay where the native Guarani have used it for over 1500 years to sweeten otherwise unpalatable medicinal drinks. It is a short plant, growing up to 2-3 ft in the wild and flowering from January to March in the southern hemisphere. Flowers are white, not showy. Stems are long, flattened and twisted with small grey green rounded leaves.The sweet leaves are used as sugar substitute.

Identification credit: Tabish Photographed in Garden of Five Senses, Delhi.
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