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Chinese Plant Names | Family List | Sapindaceae | Cardiospermum

Cardiospermum halicacabum Linn.


Description from Flora of China

Cardiospermum halicacabum var. microcarpum (Kunth) Blume; C. microcarpum Kunth.

Climbers, herbaceous, 1-1.5 m. Stems and branches green, 5- or 6-sulcate, slender, glabrous or sparsely hairy. Leaves biternate, triangular in outline; petioles 3-4 cm; leaflets subsessile; blades thinly papery, margin sparsely serrate or pinnately parted, abaxially sparsely villous on midvein and lateral veins, adaxially subglabrous or sparsely pilosulose; terminal blade obliquely lanceolate or subrhombic, 3-8 × 1.5-2.5 cm, apex acuminate; lateral ones slightly smaller, ovate or narrowly elliptic. Panicles few flowered, ca. as long as or slightly longer than
leaves; peduncles straight, 4-8 cm, tendrils spiralled. Sepals 4, ciliate, outer 2 ovate, 8-10 mm, inner 2 narrowly elliptic, ca. 2 × as long as outer ones. Petals milky-white, obovate. Stamens (male flowers) ca. as long as or slightly longer than petals; filaments sparsely long villous. Ovary (female flowers) obovoid or sometimes subglobose, pubescent. Capsules brown, pearlike, turbinate-obtriangular or sometimes nearly ellipsoid, 1.5-3 × 2-4 cm, pubescent. Seeds black, shiny, ca. 5 mm in diam.; hilum green when fresh, white when dry, cordate. Fl. summer-autumn, fr. autumn-early winter.

This species is used medicinally.

Forest margins, shrublands, grasslands, cultivated areas, wastelands. Common in E, S, and SW China, rare in N China [common weed widely distributed in tropical and subtropical regions].


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