Jussiaea adscendens L.
Jussiaea repens L.
Ludwigia adscendens is a herbaceous perennial plant with both prostrate and ascending stems that root at the nodes. The erect stems are up to 60cm tall, whilst the prostrate stems, which float in water, can be 4 metres long[
]. When growing on dry land, the plants have small, crowded leaves, are densely hairy and rarely produce flowers[
The plant is sometimes harvested from the wild as a local source of food and medicines.
E. Asia - southern China, Indian subcontinent, Myanmar, Thailand, Cambodia, Laos, Vietnam, Malaysia, Indonesia, Philippines, New Guinea, Australia.
Freshwater pools, ditches, swamps, fallow and wet paddies, very common, from the lowland up to elevations of around 1,600 metres[
A plant of the wet tropics, where it is found at elevations up to 1,500 metres. It grows best in areas where annual daytime temperatures are within the range 15 - 25°c, but can tolerate 8 - 30°c[
]. It prefers a mean annual rainfall in the range 1,500 - 3,000mm, but tolerates 1,000 - 4,000mm[
Requires a sunny position[
]. Grows best in a fertile clay soil[
]. Prefers a pH in the range 5.5 - 7, tolerating 4.5 - 8.5[
The plant can escape from cultivation and become a weed[
]. It is a serious aquatic weed of rice paddy in Thailand, Indonesia, Malaysia and the Philippines[
This plant has two types of roots, one anchors the plant to the soil, whilst the other, which looks like tiny bananas, contains air sacs that keep the plant afloat, and assist respiration[
Leaves and young shoots - raw[
]. Eaten as a salad[
A decoction of the aerial parts are used as a treatment for dysentery, fever, cough and ophthalmia[
The aerial parts are used to make poultices for treating skin complaints such as boils, ulcers and impetigo[
]. They are pounded with the ash of bamboo leaves and the leaves of Osmanthus fragrans, and are then applied to swellings[
In Papua New Guinea, the leaves and stem are considered to have contraceptive properties[
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