Acalypha indica

(Click image to Enlarge)

Photographs by: Dr. Maulik Gadani

«
»
  • Botanical Name : Acalypha indica L.
  • Synonyms : Acalypha chinensis Benth.
  • Common Name : Vaichikato, Dadaro, Indian Acalypha
  • Plant Family : Euphorbiaceae
  • Plant Form : Herb
  • Occurrence (Sectors) : 1, 2, 4, 5, 6, 12-18, 20-25, 27, 30
  • Occurrence (Special Areas) : Gujarat Forestry Research Foundation, Indroda Park, Ayurvedic Udyan, Van Chetana Kendra, Infocity

About Acalypha indica Plant :

  • Habit : Small annual herbs, erect, at times diffuse, 30-120 cm high.
  • Stem : Simple or branched, deep-green, hirsute, angular, hairy and deeply grooved in younger parts, more or less terete, glabrous and faintly straite in older.
  • Leaves : Alternate, ovate, rhomboid-ovate, sometimes obovate, subacute or obtuse at apex, cuneate or tapering at base, serrate only in the upper part along the margins, dark-green above, pale-green below, glabrous or thinly hairy, petioles 3-8 cm long, hairy, stipules small.
  • Inflorescence : Androgynous spikes 2.5 - 6 cm long, axillary white - pubescent.
  • Flowers :
    • Male flowers minute, pale-greenish-yellow, condensed in the upper part, followed by a tuft of sterile flowers.
    • Females lax, in the lower half, scattered, 3-5 leafy, large, dentate, many-nerved bracts.
    • Sepals4, petals 0, stamens 8, filaments free, ovary 3-celled, styles filiform.
  • Fruits : Capsules 1-2 mm in diameter, green pubescent, dehiscent, concealed in the bract.
  • Seeds : 3, about 1 mm in diameter, lead-coloured or pale brown, glabrous, along ovoid, smooth.
  • Flowering and Fruiting time : June to December
  • Significance :
    • The leaves are said to be used externally in scabies and other skin diseases.
    • It is also useful in bronchitis, pneumonia and asthma.
    • The roots are cathartic.