Adhatoda acuminata Nees
Adhatoda fasciata Nees
Adhatoda flava (Vahl) Nees
Adhatoda major Nees
Adhatoda minor Nees
Adhatoda palustris (Hochst.) Nees
Adhatoda suaveolens Nees
Adhatoda sulcata (Vahl) Nees
Carima sulcata (Vahl) Raf.
Dianthera flava Vahl
Dianthera sulcata Vahl
Gendarussa palustris Hochst.
Justicia fasciata E.Mey.
Justicia major (Nees) T.Anderson
Justicia minor (Nees) T.Anderson
Justicia nelsonioides Fiori
Justicia palustris (Hochst.) T.Anderson
Justicia smithii S.Moore
Justicia suaveolens (Nees) Lindau
Justicia sulcata (Vahl) Vahl
Tyloglossa acuminata (Nees) Hochst.
Tyloglossa major Hochst.
Tyloglossa palustris Hochst.
Brown-veined White (Belenois aurota) on the flowers
Photograph by: Bernard DUPONT
Justicia flava is an erect or trailing, usually perennial herb growing up to 120cm tall. The stem often becomes woody at the base[
]. In dry regions the plant can grow as an annual with smaller flowers[
The plant is harvested from the wild for local use as a food and medicine. In some areas the plant is not removed when found growing as a weed in cultivated fields, but is allowed to grow on in order to harvest its leaves for vegetable use[
]. The plant is sometimes grown as an ornamental and can be used as a ground cover to protect the soil[
Africa - widespread throughout tropical Africa and south to S. Africa; also found on the Arabian Peninsula.
Open habitats, with a wide ecological range, at elevations from sea-level to 2,300 metres[
|Other Uses Rating||
|Pollinators||Bees, Butterflies, Insects
|Cultivation Status||Ornamental, Semi-cultivated, Wild
Found in a wide range of habitats from the tropics to the sub-tropics and from dry climates to moist ones. At least some forms of the plant can tolerate moderate frost[
Grows best in a sunny position, but also tolerates partial shade[
]. Succeeds on a wide range of soils[
]. Tolerant of dry conditions[
Leaves - cooked. They can be mixed into soups or stews[
The leaves are burnt to ash to produce a vegetable salt[
The leaves are reported to be emetic and haemostatic[
]. Preparations are used to treat menorrhagia and blood in the sputum. The whole crushed plant, combined with vegetable ash, the seed of Aframomum species and capsicum pepper, is administered by enema as a treatment against painful menses[
]. Mixed with lemon juice, the plant is taken to induce menstruation[
]. An infusion of the plant is taken with egg albumen and coconut juice as a treatment against palpitations of the heart[
]. The leaf sap is taken against hookworm and to treat hydrocele, the treatment including bathing of the affected parts[
The plant is used both internally and externally against fevers, yaws and diarrhoea in children[
Preparations are applied directly on cuts, whilst the pulped leaves are rubbed on the skin to treat convulsions and feverish pains in babies[
]. The leaf sap is used as an eye lotion[
The inflorescence is said to be a cure for dysentery[
The bitter root is chewed by the Masai to cure diarrhoea and coughs[
Four sterols and salicylic acid were isolated from the leaves, stems and roots of the plant[
The leaves contain the 3 lignans helioxanthin, (+)-isolariciresinol and justicinol, as well as docosanoic acid and β-sitosterol-β-D-glucoside.[
The plant contributes to sand-binding vegetation in coastal dunes and sandy river banks[
]. It makes a wonderful groundcover for use in sunny spots[
Seed - sow the seeds in a container onto the surface of the compost, pressing them down lightly. Place the container in a shady spot and water well, being careful not to wash the seed away. Germination should take place after a week. Transplant the seedlings into individual containers when they are large enough to handle and they will be ready to plant out when they reach a height of 20cm[
The seeds have water-absorbent hairs[
Cuttings around 12cm long. The ideal rooting temperature is between 15 - 25°c. Water twice a week. After rooting, transplant the cuttings in a good soil mixture and place them in 60% shade until established[
If you have any useful information about this plant, please leave a comment. Comments have to be approved before they are shown here.