Mimosa pudica

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Mimosa pudica

Description

Annual or perennial, sometimes subshrubby herb, erect to scrambling, sometimes rooting at the nodes, up to 1 m high; Leaves subdigitately pinnate, petiole furrowed, hispid, (2.5-)3-5.5 cm, without prickles at the junctions of the pinnae, but sometimes with some recurved prickles in between; Inflorescences consisting of axillary, pedunculate, solitary or paired glomerules. Flowers sessile, bisexual, tetramerous, lilac, pink or bluish purple. Stamens 4. Ovary glabrous, 0.3-0.6 mm. Seeds light brown, suborbicular to broadly elliptic, flattened, 2.5-2.9 by 2-2.3 mm.

Distribution

Asia-Tropical, Pantropical present, South America present
Pantropical weed of South American origin. The three varieties are all found in Malesia.

Uses

Used as cover-crop at roadsides in Thailand; roots used medicinally in the Philippines; contains tannins.

Notes

The leaves are extremely sensitive to the touch.

Citation

Verdc., Manual New Guin. Legum. 1979: 148
Blanco, Fl. Filip., ed. 2. 1845: 505
Nielsen - in Fl. Camb. Laos Vietnam. 1981: pl. 5, 15-2
Willd. - in Sp. Pl., ed. 4. 1806: 1032
Backer & Bakh. f. - in Fl. Java. 1963: 561
Blanco - in Fl. Filip., ed. 3. 1879: 134
Brenan, Kew Bull. 1955: 184
L. - in Fl. Thailand. 1985: 152
L. - in Fl. Nouv.- Caled. et Depend. 1983: 20