Carpopogon monospermum Roxb.
Mucuna anguina Wall.
Mucuna monosperma (Roxb.) DC.
Stizolobium monospermum (Wight) Kuntze
Stizolobium rugosum Moon
Mucuna monosperma is a large climbing shrub with twining stems.
The plant is sometimes harvested from the wild for local use as a food and medicine.
Mucuna species often possess irritant hairs on the seedpods and sometimes on the flowers and other parts. These hairs consist of 1-2 small basal cells and a large needle-like top cell. The top cell breaks off easily, piercing the skin and injecting chemical compounds that are present in the hairs. The proteolytic enzyme 'Mucunain' is said to be the active agent[
The hairs can contaminate clothes or other objects, and remain active when dried, though they can be destroyed by heat[
]. Intense itching, with reddening of the skin and small papules or urticaria occur a few minutes after contact with the hairy parts of the plant. There is no serious danger, unless the hairs get into the eye, in which case, in extreme situations, they have caused blindness. To remove the hairs from the skin, adhesive tape and washing with water and soap are considered useful. Dermatitis can be treated with corticosteroid ointment. See a doctor immediately if hairs go into the eyes[
E. Asia - India, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Myanmar, Thailand.
Thickets, disturbed forest and clearings; at elevations around 300 metres.
Mucuna species generally grow best in a shady position in a humus-rich, moist but well-drained soil[
This species has a symbiotic relationship with certain soil bacteria; these bacteria form nodules on the roots and fix atmospheric nitrogen. Some of this nitrogen is utilized by the growing plant but some can also be used by other plants growing nearby[
This is a favourite vegetable with Brahmins[
]. No more information is given.
]. The boiled seeds are eaten in times of great scarcity[
]. No more information is given, but it is likely that the seed would need to be thoroughly cooked to render it wholesome[
The plant (part not specified) is used as an expectorant in cough and asthma, and is applied externally as a sedative[
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