24. Ipomoea mauritiana Jacquin, Collectanea. 4: 216. 1791.
七爪龙 qi zhao long
Herbs perennial, twining, with glabrous or minutely muricate axial parts. Roots tuberous. Stems to 10 m, thinly angular. Petiole 3-11 cm; leaf blade circular in outline, 7-18 X 7-22 cm, usually palmately 5-7-divided to or beyond middle, rarely entire or shallowly lobed; segments lanceolate or elliptic, glabrous or sparsely pubescent along midvein, entire or irregularly undulate, apex acuminate or acute, mucronulate. Inflorescences few to many flowered; peduncle 2.5-20 cm; bracts early deciduous. Pedicel 0.9-2.2 cm. Sepals ± circular, oblong to broadly elliptic, concave, equal or outer 2 shorter, 7-12 mm, glabrous, apex obtuse. Corolla pink or reddish purple, with a darker center, funnelform, 5-6 cm; limb 5-7 cm in diam., undulate. Stamens included. Pistil included; ovary glabrous. Stigma 2-lobed. Capsule ovoid, 1.2-1.4 cm. Seeds dark brown, ca. 6 mm, woolly-sericeous with long, easily detached hairs. 2n = 30.
Waste places, dwarf forests near seashores, thickets, montane forests, streamsides; 0-1100 m. Guangdong, Guangxi, Hainan, Taiwan, S Yunnan [Cambodia, Indonesia, Japan (Ogasawara and Ryukyu Islands), Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, New Guinea, Philippines, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Vietnam; Pacific Islands]
The leaves and roots are used externally to treat tuberculosis and for the treatment of external and breast infections.
The origin of Ipomoea mauritiana is unknown, but it may be in tropical America, where the nearest relatives occur.
Ipomoea mauritiana has often been misidentified as I. digitata (Linnaeus) Linnaeus, a West Indian endemic that does not occur in Asia.