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Overview

Comprehensive Description

Miscellaneous Details

Notes: Cultivated
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Miscellaneous Details

Roots and seeds are used in traditional medicine.
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Description

Perennial climbing or trailing herb, growing from a woody rootstock. Leaves imparipinnate with 2-4 pairs of leaflets and a terminal leaflet. Leaflets ovate to elliptic-oblong, up to 6.5 × 4 cm, mostly hairless above, pubescent below. Flowers axillary, solitary or 2 together, resupinate, large and showy, bright blue with a with centre, sometimes completely white. Standard up to 5 × 4 cm. Pod linear-oblong, 6-13 cm long, flattened, mucronate at the apex, hairless or finely pubescent.
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© Mark Hyde, Bart Wursten and Petra Ballings

Source: Flora of Zimbabwe

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Distribution

National Distribution

United States

Origin: Exotic

Regularity: Regularly occurring

Currently: Unknown/Undetermined

Confidence: Confident

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Distribution: In disturbed areas, such as pastures or roadsides. Native to Africa but found widely distributed throughout the tropics and subtropics of the New World. Also on Vieques, St. Croix, St. John, St. Thomas, and Tortola.

Public Forests: Guánica and Río Abajo.

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"Abundant in forest clearings, thickets, scrub jungles from plains to 500m. Native of tropical America, widely cultivated for its showy flower."
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Maharashtra: Kolhapur
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Worldwide distribution

Pantropical. Its true origins are now uncertain due to widespread cultivation.
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Source: Flora of Zimbabwe

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Distribution: Cosmopolitan in tropics, widely cultivated as an ornamental plant; the true distribution now difficult to trace in view of cultivation.
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Widely cultivated in tropics; probably a native of S. America.
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Physical Description

Morphology

"
Flower

Solitary or in clusters; deep blue, occasionally white. Flowering from March-May.

Fruit

A linear, oblong pod, compressed, apically beaked; seeds 10-15, reniform. Fruiting throughout the year.

Field tips

Branchlets appressed-tomentose. Bracteoles very large, persistent.

Leaf Arrangement

Alternate distichous

Leaf Type

Imparipinnate

Leaf Shape

Ovate

Leaf Apex

Obtuse

Leaf Base

Obtuse

Leaf Margin

Entire

"
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Physical Description

Perennial, Herbs, Taproot present, Nodules present, Stems or branches arching, spreading or decumbent, Stems prostrate, trailing, or mat forming, Stems 1-2 m tall, Stems greater than 2 m tall, Stems solid, Stems or young twigs glabrous or sparsely glabrate, Stems or young twigs sparsely to densely hairy, Leaves alternate, Leave s petiolate, Stipules conspicuous, Stipules green, triangulate to lanceolate or foliaceous, Stipules persistent, Stipules free, Leaves compound, Leaves odd pinnate, Leaf or leaflet margins entire, Leaflets alternate or subopposite, Stipels present at base of leaflets, Leaflets 5-9, Leaves glabrous or nearly so, Flowers solitary in axils, or appearing solitary, Inflorescence axillary, Bracts conspicuously present, Bracteoles present, Flowers zygomorphic, Flowers resupinate, banner in inverted or lateral position, Calyx 5-lobed, Calyx glabrous, Petals separate, Corolla papilionaceous, Petals blue, lavander to purple, or violet, Banner petal suborbicular, broadly rounded, Wing petals narrow, oblanceolate to oblong, Wing tips obtuse or rounded, Keel petals auriculate, spurred, or gibbous, Keel tips obtuse or rounded, not beaked, Keel petals fused on sides or at tip, Stamens 9-10, Stamens diadelphous, 9 united, 1 free, Filaments glabrous, Style terete, Style sharply bent, Style hairy, Style hairy on one side only, Style with distal tuft of hairs, Style persistent in fruit, Reduced cleistogamous flowers produced, Fruit a legume, Fruit stipitate, Fruit unilocular, Fruit freely dehiscent, Fruit elongate, straight, Fruit oblong or ellipsoidal, Fruit exserted from calyx, Fruit compressed between seeds, Valves twisting or coiling after dehiscence, Fruit beaked, Fruit hairy, Fruit 3-10 seeded, Seeds subquadrate, Seed surface smooth, Seeds olive, brown, or black.
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Dr. David Bogler

Source: USDA NRCS PLANTS Database

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Description

A woody climber. Leaves 5-9.5 cm long, unipinnate, leaflets usually 5-7, 1.4-6.5 cm long, 1-4 cm wide, oblong, slightly emarginate or obtuse, short stalked, petiolules up to 2 mm long, stipules linear, 4-10 mm long, apex acute. Inflorescence solitary axillary. Bracts 4-5 mm long, bracteoles c. 7 mm long, orbicular. Pedicel 6-9 mm long. Calyx 12-16 mm long, 2 upper teeth joined near the base. Corolla rich blue in colour with greenish veins on the vexillum, vexillum 2.5-5.0 cm long, 3.5 cm broad, Stamens 10, diadelphous, 9+1, dimorphic the vexilIary stamen free, Ovary hairy, style simple, hairy along the inner side. Fruit up to 5-12 cm long, beaked 8-10-seeded, glabrous or sparsely pubescent.
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Elevation Range

200 m
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Diagnostic Description

Clitoria ternatea L., Sp. Pl. 753. 1753.

Fig. 101. D-H

Woody vine, twining, attainig 1-3 m in length. Stems slender, cylindrical, with lines of minute trichomes. Leaves alternate, 5-7-foliolate; leaflets opposite, 1.5-4.5 × 1-3.5 cm, elliptical or less frequently ovate or oblong, chartaceous, the apex rounded, obtuse, sometimes retuse or mucronate, the base obtuse, the margins entire; upper surface dark green, dull, puberulent, with the midvein sunken; lower surface pale green, dull, puberulent, with prominent venation; rachis 2-7 cm long; petiolules minute, pubescent; petioles 2-4 cm long, pubescent, with the base thickened; stipels filiform, ca. 1.5 mm long; stipules lanceolate, pubescent, ca. 4 mm long. Flowers solitary, on short peduncles; pedicel ca. 1 cm long, pubescent, with a pair of bracteoles in the middle. Calyx campanulate, 1.5-2.2 cm long, green, puberulent, the lobes lanceolate-ovate, 8-10 mm long, with the midvein conspicuous; corolla blue-violet, the standard broadly ovate, 3.5-5 cm long, retuse, with the base pale yellow and the center pale yellow inside. Legume 9-11 × ca. 1 cm, oblong, ribbed along both margins, the apex acuminate. Seeds numerous, 5-6 mm long, oblong, flattened, dark brown.

Phenology: Flowering and fruiting throughout the year.

Status: Exotic, cultivated and naturalized, relatively common.

Commentary: According to Fantz (1990), the following two varieties are found in Puerto Rico: Clitoria ternatea var. ternatea with simple flowers (only one standard per flower) and C. ternatea var. pleniflora Fantz with double flowers (4-5 standards per flower).

Selected Specimens Examined: Acevedo-Rdgz., P. 2623; 5236; 5392; 11489;Axelrod, F. 6378; Britton, N.L. 4875; Goll, G.P. 47; 502; Heller, A.A. 6224; Hioram, B. s.n.; Sargent, F.H. 272; Shafer, J.A. 2358; Sintenis, P. 825; 1639; Stevenson, J.A. 1835; 2244.

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Diagnostic

"Habit: A very slender vine, to 6m."
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Diagnostic

Habit: Twiner
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Ecology

Habitat

General Habitat

"Common on waysides, thickets, scrub jungles. Widely cultivated in the tropics. Plains from the coast to 900m. Probably a native of South America."
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Life History and Behavior

Cyclicity

Flower/Fruit

Fl.Per.: June-January.
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Molecular Biology and Genetics

Molecular Biology

Barcode data: Clitoria ternatea

The following is a representative barcode sequence, the centroid of all available sequences for this species.


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Source: Barcode of Life Data Systems (BOLD)

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Statistics of barcoding coverage: Clitoria ternatea

Barcode of Life Data Systems (BOLDS) Stats
Public Records: 3
Specimens with Barcodes: 5
Species With Barcodes: 1
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Conservation

Conservation Status

National NatureServe Conservation Status

United States

Rounded National Status Rank: NNA - Not Applicable

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NatureServe Conservation Status

Rounded Global Status Rank: GNR - Not Yet Ranked

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Relevance to Humans and Ecosystems

Benefits

Folklore

Indigenous Information: A mixture of flower and milk taken orally to reduce body heat. The root paste is used as a cure for snake bite. A good fodder for cattle.
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Uses

Roots and seeds are used in traditional medicine. An infusion or herbal tea is prepared by boiling the fresh petals with water.
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Wikipedia

Clitoria ternatea

Flower and pods in different states of ripeness
The shape of the flower has inspired some of its names.

Clitoria ternatea, common names including butterfly-pea, blue-pea, and cordofan-pea, is a plant species belonging to the Fabaceae family. The flowers of this vine have the shape of human female genitals, hence the Latin name of the genus "Clitoria", from "clitoris". (Synonyms: Clitoris principissae.).[1]

Names in other languages include bunga telang (Malay).

Distribution[edit]

This plant is native to tropical equatorial Asia, but has been introduced to Africa, Australia and America.

Description[edit]

It is a perennial herbaceous plant, with elliptic, obtuse leaves. It grows as a vine or creeper, doing well in moist, neutral soil. The most striking feature about this plant are its vivid deep blue flowers; solitary, with light yellow markings. They are about 4 cm long by 3 cm wide. There are some varieties that yield white flowers.

The fruits are 5 – 7 cm long, flat pods with 6 to 10 seeds in each pod. They are edible when tender.

It is grown as an ornamental plant and as a revegetation species (e.g., in coal mines in Australia), requiring little care when cultivated. As a legume, its roots form a symbiotic association with soil bacteria known as rhizobia, which transform atmospheric N2 into a plant usable form, therefore, this plant is also used to improve soil quality through the decomposition of N-rich tissue.

Uses[edit]

In traditional Ayurvedic medicine, it has been used for centuries as a memory enhancer, nootropic, antistress, anxiolytic, antidepressant, anticonvulsant, tranquilizing and sedative agent.[2]

In Southeast Asia the flowers are used to colour food. In Malay cooking, an aqueous extract is used to colour glutinous rice for kuih ketan (also known as pulut tai tai in Peranakan/Nyonya cooking) and in nyonya chang. In Kelantan it is used to colour white rice for Nasi Kerabu. In Thailand, a syrupy blue drink is made called nam dok anchan (น้ำดอกอัญชัน), it is sometimes consumed with a drop of sweet lime juice to increase acidity and turn the juice into pink-purple. In Burmese and Thai cuisine the flowers are also dipped in batter and fried.

In animal tests the methanolic extract of Clitoria ternatea roots demonstrated nootropic, anxiolytic, antidepressant, anticonvulsant and antistress activity.[3] The active constituents include tannins, resins, starch, taraxerol and taraxerone.

Recently, several biologically active peptides called cliotides have been isolated from the heat-stable fraction of Clitoria ternatea extract. Cliotides belong to the cyclotides family[4] and activities studies show that cliotides display potent antimicrobial activity against E. coli, K. pneumonia, P. aeruginosa and cytotoxicity against Hela cells. These peptides have potential to be leading compounds for the development of novel antimicrobial and anti-cancer agents.[5]

In traditional medicine: Owing to its similarity to a human body part, this plant has been ascribed properties affecting the same (a phenomenon also found in connection with the mandrake, among other plants). It was used traditionally in an attempt to treat sexual ailments, like infertility and gonorrhea, to control menstrual discharge, and also as an aphrodisiac. This practice aligns with an ancient belief recorded in the Doctrine of Signatures.[6]

Gallery[edit]

Front and back sides
Clitoria ternatea, Isla Margarita, Venezuela
Clitoria tea in a pot
Thai Khao tom sweet colored blue with Clitoria ternatea flowers
அடுக்கு சஙுகு flower, More popular is single petal. This multilayer flower is more beautiful and is used as natural dye

References[edit]

  1. ^ Pharmacopia Indica Awl
  2. ^ Mukherjee PK, Kumar V, Kumar NS, Heinrich M"The Ayurvedic medicine Clitoria ternatea-From traditional use to scientific assessment." J Ethnopharmacol. 2008 Sep 20;
  3. ^ Jain, N; Ohal, C.C; Shroff, S.K; Bhutada, R.H; Somani, R.S; Kasture, V.S; Kasture, S.B (2003). "Clitoria ternatea and the CNS". Pharmacology Biochemistry and Behavior 75 (3): 529. doi:10.1016/S0091-3057(03)00130-8. 
  4. ^ Nguyen, GK; Zhang, S; Nguyen, NT; Nguyen, PQ; Chiu, MS; Hardjojo, A; Tam, JP. (Jul 2011). "Discovery and characterization of novel cyclotides originated from chimeric precursors consisting of albumin-1 chain a and cyclotide domains in the Fabaceae family". J Biol Chem. 286 (27): 24275–87. doi:10.1074/jbc.m111.229922. 
  5. ^ Nguyen, Kien Truc Giang; Zhang, S; Nguyen, N. T.; Nguyen, P. Q.; Chiu, M. S.; Hardjojo, A.; Tam, J. P. (8 July 2011). "Discovery and Characterization of Novel Cyclotides Originated from Chimeric Precursors Consisting of Albumin-1 Chain a and Cyclotide Domains in the Fabaceae Family". Journal of Biological Chemistry 286 (27): 24275–24287. doi:10.1074/jbc.M111.229922. PMC 3129208. PMID 21596752. Retrieved July 8, 2011. 
  6. ^ Fantz, Paul R. (1991). "Ethnobotany of Clitoria (Leguminosae)". Economic Botany (New York Botanical Garden Press) 45 (4): 511–20. doi:10.1007/BF02930715. JSTOR 4255394. 
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Notes

Comments

The root is reputed to have medicinal properties.
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