Indian Weed
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Indian Weed
A Native Photo: Shaista Ahmad
Common name: Indian Weed, Eastern St. Paul's-wort, Holy herb, Sticky Weed • Garhwali: लिचकुरा Lichkura • Gujarati: પીળી બદકડી Pili Badakdi • Hindi: गोबरिया Gobariya • Kachchhi: પીરી ફુલડી Piri Fuldi • Kannada: ಅಂಟು ಹೂವಿನ ಗಿಡ Antu Huvina Gida • Malayalam: കടംപൂ Katampoo • Marathi: कटंपू Katampu • Nepali: दुधे झार Dudhe Jhaar, गोब्रे झार Gobre Jhaar, नौनिं पत्र Nauni Patra • Tamil: கதம்பம் Katampam • Telugu: కతమ్పం Katampam, రెక్కల రావి Rekkala ravi • Mizo: Ansapui-suak Source: Names of Plants in India
Botanical name: Sigesbeckia orientalis    Family: Asteraceae (Sunflower family)
Synonyms: Siegesbeckia orientalis, Minyranthes heterophylla

Indian Weed is a small annual herb, growing up to 2-4 ft tall. Stem and branches are velvety, purple. Oppositely arranged leaves, 5-10 cm long, are triangular-ovate, sharp tipped, with toothed margin. The flowers heads are small with five bracts just below them, which are covered with very sticky glandular hairs. The secretion continues till after the fruit is ripe and aids in its distribution - the whole flower-head breaks off and attaches itself to some passing animal. The flowering heads are yellow, small, somewhat rounded, and 5-6 mm in diameter. The ray flowers are red beneath, very short, curved back, and 3-toothed. The achenes are each enclosed in a boat-shaped bractlet which is hairless but slightly rough. Indian Weed is found in India at altitudes of 400-2700 m. Flowering: October-November.
Medicinal uses: The juice of the fresh herb is used as a dressing for wounds, over which, as it dries, it leaves a varnishing coating. A decoction of the leaves and young shoots is used as a lotion for ulcers and parasitic skin diseases.

Identification credit: Navendu Pāgé Photographed in Mussoorie & Dhanaulti, Uttarakhand.

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