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Desmodium gangeticum

Family

Fabaceae

Botanical Name

Desmodium gangeticum (L.) DC.

Candolle, A.P. de (1825) Prodromus 2: 327. Type: ?.

Synonyms

Hedysarum gangeticum L., Species Plantarum: 746(1753), Type: ?.

Stem

Flowers and fruits as a herb or a shrub up to 1 m tall.

Leaves

Leaf blades about 30-120 x 17-50 mm, petioles about 8-20 mm long. (Petiole consists of two parts: the compound leaf petiole and the leaflet stalk, and a pair of stipels each about 2-5 mm long.) Stipules narrowly triangular to linear, about 3-8 mm long, venation longitudinal. Underside of the leaf blades clothed in pale, appressed hairs. Lateral veins 7-10 on each side of the midrib.

Flowers

Inflorescence a fasciculate raceme about 20-30 cm long. Flowers about 5-7 mm diam. Calyx tube about 1-1.5 mm long, lobes about 1-1.5 mm long. Corolla lobes about 3-4 mm long. Stamens 10, the filaments of nine stamens fused to form a tube open on one side while the filament of one stamen is completely free. Ovary about 2.5 mm long, clothed in hairs. Ovules about 6 per ovary. Stigma papillate.

Fruit

Fruits (pods) about 15-25 mm long, segmented, surface clothed in hooked hairs. Seeds reniform, about 1.5x 2 mm. Radicle about 11 mm long, much shorter and narrower than the cotyledons.

Seedlings

Features not available.

Distribution and Ecology

Occurs in WA, NT, CYP, NEQ and southwards as far as New South Wales. Altitudinal range in northern Australia from near sea level to 500 m? Occurs in a variety of habitats, often in open forest but also in disturbed areas in rain forest, monsoon forest an vine thicket. Also occurs in Africa, Asia and Malesia.

Natural History

This species may have medicinal properties. (http://squid2.laughingsquid.net/hosts/herbweb.com /herbage/A8598.htm)

Grazing characteristics not recorded. Hacker (1990).

WA

X

NT

X

CYP

X

NEQ

X

Herb (herbaceous or woody, under 1 m tall)

X

Shrub (woody or herbaceous, 1-6 m tall)

X

RFK Code

3545