Edible Kudzu
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Edible Kudzu
P Native Photo: Thingnam Anne
Common name: Edible Kudzu
Botanical name: Pueraria edulis    Family: Fabaceae (Pea family)
Synonyms: Pueraria bicalcarata, Pueraria quadristipellata

Edible Kudzu is a twining herb, with stems sparsely hairy with brown hairs, and edible tubers. Leaf-stalk is 3.5-16 cm long, with trifoliate leaves. End leaflet is ovate, 9-15 x 6-10 cm, 3-lobed to entire, lateral ones obliquely broadly ovate, smaller, 2-lobed, base wedge-shaped or rounded, tip shortly tapering, velvet-hairy on both surfaces. Flowers are borne in racemes up to 30 cm, simple or once branched. Flowers are purple or pink; standard nearly round, 14-17 mm, tip notched, base eared and with callosities, claw about 3.5 mm; wings obovate, about 16 mm, clawed and eared; keel oblique. Sepal-cup hairy on both surfaces or hairless outside; tube 3-5 mm; sepals 4, lanceshaped, 4-7 mm, almost equal, upper one broader. Flowers are 3 at each node of axis; flower-stalks slender, up to 7 mm, hairless. Bracts are ovate, 4-6 mm, hairless or fringed with hairs; bracteoles 2-3 mm, hairless or sparsely hairy. Pods are linear-oblong, 5.5-6.5 x about 1 cm, very sparsely hairy with yellowish hairs. Edible Kudzu is found in E. Himalaya to China (Sichuan, Yunnan), up to altitudes of 1000-3200 m. Flowering: September-October.

Identification credit: Tabish Photographed in Kumarghat, Tripura.

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