Gouania integrifolia Lam.
Helinus ovatus E.Mey. ex Sond.
Helinus scandens (Eckl. & Zeyh.) A.Rich.
Willemetia scandens Eckl. & Zeyh.
Photograph by: JMK
Helinus integrifolius is a much-branched shrub or climbing plant producing stems from 0.5 - 6 metres or more tall. The stems climb into other plants for support, supporting themselves by means of tendrils and forming dense, entangled mats of growth[
The plant is harvested from the wild for local use as a source of soap.
Africa - drier areas in Ethiopia, Somalia, Uganda, Kenya, Tanzania, Angola, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Mozambique, Namibia, Botswana, S. Africa.
Thickets; forest margins; dry open woody vegetation of all sorts; usually on sand; Acacia and Acacia-Commiphora woodland and bushland; dry savannahs; in rocky places; thickets along river banks; grassy thickets; at elevations up to 1,700 metres[
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The roots are rich in saponins. They are pounded, then mixed with water and used as a soap for washing clothes[
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