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Herbarium specimen. Copyright DERM

Corchorus aestuans

Family

Malvaceae

Botanical Name

Corchorus aestuans L.

Linnaeus, C. von (1759) Systema Naturae Edn. 10 2: 1079. Type: Jamaica, P. Browne; [LINN 691.4] (lecto: LINN n.v., IDC 177-12. 356: I3 (691.4) (BRI), fide Fawcett & Rendle (1926)).

Common name

Jute

Stem

Erect spreading herb up to 30 cm tall; stems pubescent, long hairs mainly on one side of the branches and short curly hairs on the other side.

Leaves

Leaves thinly textured. Leaf blades 10-50 x 10-25 mm; petioles slender, 3-23 mm long, densely pubescent. Stipules hairy, linear, 2-8 mm long; long hairs on veins on abaxial surface

Flowers

Inflorescence a reduced 2-3 -flowered umbel. Peduncle 0.3-2 mm long. Pedicel glabrous, 1-2.5 mm long. Calyx lobes shorter than corolla, 2-3.5 mm long, very narrow and glabrous outside. Petals 2.5-4.5 mm long. Stamens 10. Ovary cylindrical, ribbed and silky pubescent. Stigma fimbriate.

Fruit

capsule ca. narrowly ellipsoid, straight, 8-20 x 3.5-6 mm. Apex of capsule with three bifid horns 2-5 mm long. Annulus prominent in young fruit. Seeds strongly angular, testa dull brown to reddish brown.

Seedlings

Features not available.

Distribution and Ecology

Occurs in WA, NT, CYP, NEQ and CQ as far south as Jericho. Altitudinal range from near sea level to 580 m. Grows mainly in disturbed areas in rainforest, Eucalypt forest, monsoon forest, vine thicket, mixed woodland, heathland, monsoon scrub and in wooded grassland.,Also from Africa, Malesia, Asia, Pacific Islands and New Guinea.

Natural History

Used as a stomachic, anti-inflammatory and as a treatment for pneumonia in India. The alcoholic extract from the whole plant showed anticancer activity against epidermal carcinoma (Khare 2007).

WA

X

NT

X

CYP

X

NEQ

X

Herb (herbaceous or woody, under 1 m tall)

X

RFK Code

4099