Velvet-Leaf Desmodium
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Velvet-Leaf Desmodium
ative Photo: J. M. Garg
Common name: Velvet-Leaf Desmodium, Villous leaf Desmodium • Hindi: jagru, lagavang, lippa-pank • Malayalam: Orila • Sanskrit: Prasniparni • Tamil: Akilametaki, Amcapatayilai, ankachupati • Telugu: Chiva madu, Chimanduri
Botanical name: Polhillides velutina    Family: Fabaceae (Pea family)
Synonyms: Hedysarum velutinum, Desmodium velutinum

Velvet-Leaf Desmodium is an upright woody perennial herb, subshrub, or shrub, up to 3 m tall. Leaves 1-foliolate (rarely 3-foliolate), occasionally opposite. Leaflets are light green to blue-green or darker above, paler beneath and with prominent pallid veins, roundish to elliptic to rhombic- ovate, 3–9.4 cm long, 2–7 cm wide, entire or repand (indented at the termination of the lateral veins) and ciliate, thick, mostly soft velvety on both surfaces with long stiff golden, reddish or white hairs. Inflorescences arise in leaf axils, and at the end of branches. They are densely flowered racemes up to 10 cm or more long, at least the terminal ones often paniculately branched. Flowers are white to pink, to blue, mauve or brilliant purple, usually appearing whitish or pale when dry.

Identification credit: N.S. Dungriyal Photographed at Herbal Garden, Hyderabad, Andhra Pradesh.

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