Catenaria caudata (Thunb.) Schindl.
Catenaria laburnifolia (Poir.) Benth.
Catenaria laburnifolium (Poir.) Benth.
Desmodium caudatum (Thunb.) DC.
Desmodium laburnifolium (Poir.) DC.
Hedysarum caudatum Murray
Hedysarum caudatum Thunb.
Hedysarum laburnifolium Poir.
Meibomia caudata (Thunb.) Kuntze
Meibomia laburnifolia (Poir.) Kuntze
Ohwia caudata is a much-branched, erect, perennial plant with more or less woody stems that persist. It can grow from 100 - 200cm tall[
The plant is harvested from the wild for local use as a medicine and a pesticide.
E. Asia - China, Japan, Korea, India, Sri Lanka, Bhutan, Myanmar, Laos, Vietnam, Malaysia, Indonesia.
Woods in C. and S. Japan[
]. Mountain slopes, roadsides, grasslands, streamsides and forest margins at elevations of 100 - 1,000 metres in China[
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Requires a well-drained soil and a sunny sheltered position[
Because of the abundant small uncinate hairs on most species, the seedpods cling most tenaciously to clothing, to any part of the human body, and also to the feathers and hair of various animals, thus ensuring a wide dispersal of the plants[
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[
The plant is analgesic, antipyretic, antiseptic and depurative[
The root and leaves are diuretic[
The roots and leaves are used as a pesticide[
Seed - best sown as soon as it is ripe. Stored seed develops a hard seedcoat and may benefit from scarification before sowing in order to speed up and improve germination. This can usually be done by pouring a small amount of nearly boiling water on the seeds (being careful not to cook them!) and then soaking them for 12 - 24 hours in warm water. By this time they should have imbibed moisture and swollen - if they have not, then carefully make a nick in the seedcoat (being careful not to damage the embryo) and soak for a further 12 hours before sowing.
The seed usually germinates within 1 - 4 months at 25°c. Prick out the seedlings into individual pots once they are large enough to handle and grow them on until large enough to plant out.
Cuttings of half-ripe wood with a heel.
Division. Larger clumps can be replanted direct into their permanent positions, though it is best to pot up smaller clumps and grow them on until they are rooting well.
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