This species is closely related to Cynoglossum coeruleum Hochst. ex A.DC., intermediates occur where their ranges overlap making a distinction between the species complicated[
Cynoglossum hirsutum Thunb.
Cynoglossum micranthum Desf.
Paracynoglossum lanceolatum (Forssk.) R.R.Mill
Plant growing in native habitat
Photograph by: Shipher
Cynoglossum lanceolatum is a much-branched, erect, biennial plant growing up to 150cm tall, but more commonly only to 100cm[
The plant is harvested from the wild for local use as a food and medicine.
No specific mention of toxicity has been seen for this species, but many members of this plant family (Boraginaceae) are known to contain pyrrolizidine alkaloids. These alkaloids have a cumulative effect upon the body and, unless concentrations in a plant are high, occasional use is generally completely safe. They are derived from amino acids including ornithine. Many pyrrolizidine alkaloids have pronounced hepatic toxicity, but the lungs and other organs may be affected as well. Mutagenic and carcinogenic activities of pyrrolizidine alkaloids have also been reported[
Africa - scattered in drier areas from Cote D'Ivoire to Ethiopia, south to S. Africa; Arabian Peninsula to Pakistan, tropical Asia to the Philippines.
Montane grasslands, ravine forests, on river banks, stream sides, grassy hillsides, cultivated grounds and roadsides, usually at elevations from 1,000 - 2,250 metres, but sometimes descending to 360 metres or ascending to 3,000 metres[
Leaves - added to soups[
The plant (part not specified) is diaphoretic, diuretic expectorant and febrifuge[
The crushed plant is applied to wounds as a plaster[
The roots are used in the treatment of eye problems[
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