Leafless East-Indian Vine
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Leafless East-Indian Vine
ative Photo: Saneesh CS
Common name: Leafless East-Indian Vine • Hindi: सोमा Soma, सोमलता Somlata • Kannada: braahmi, hambu balli, hambu kalli • Rajasthani: आक थोर Aak thor • Sanskrit: सोमा Soma, सोमलता Somlata, सोमवल्ली Somavalli • Tamil: kodikkalli, somamum • Telugu: aaku jemudu, aku jemudu
Botanical name: Cynanchum acidum    Family: Apocynaceae (Oleander family)
Synonyms: Sarcostemma acidum, Asclepias acida, Sarcostemma brevistigma

Leafless East-Indian Vine is a climber with stems up to 2 m long,, twining, green or gray, hairless. Flower cymes are borne at branch ends or in axils, 6-15-flowered, about 1 × 2 cm, carried on 3-5 mm long stalks. Sepals are ovate, about 1 mm, margin translucent. Flowers are white or yellowish, petals ovate-oblong or oblong-lanceshaped, about 3 × 1 mm, hairless. Outer corona is shallowly cupular, inner lobes obtuse, slightly shorter than or as long as anthers. Seed-pods are lanceshaped in outline, round in cross-secion. about 15 × 1 cm. Seeds are broadly ovate, about 3 × 2 mm. Leafless East-Indian Vine is found in seashore thickets in India, Myanmar, Nepal, Thailand, Vietnam and China. Flowering: March-November.
Medicinal uses: In Siddha medicine system, this plant is used in treatment of respiratory ailments like mild bronchospasms,allergic rhinitis, sinusitis, coryza or common cold.

Identification credit: N. Arun Kumar Photographed in Karnataka.

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