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Chinese Plant Names | Family List | Urticaceae | Pilea

Pilea swinglei Merr.


Description from Flora of China

Pilea crateriforma Metcalf; P. henryana C. H. Wright; P. peploides (Gaudichaud-Beaupré) J. D. Hooker & Arnott var. minutissima Hsu.

Herbs weak, glabrous, monoecious. Stems simple or branched, 7-30 cm tall, 1-3 mm in diam., succulent. Stipules soon deciduous, triangular, minute, ca. 1 mm, membranous; petiole subequal in length, 0.5-3 mm; leaf blade abaxially pale green with dense purplish dots, adaxially greenish, broadly ovate or trianglular-ovate, subequal in size, 1-5.5 × 0.8-3 mm, succulent, thinly papery when dry, lateral veins 2 or 3 each side, indistinct, sunken adaxially, prominent abaxially, abaxial surface honeycombed, cystoliths linear, often conspicuously along margin adaxially, base cordate or subtruncate, margin often serrate or crenate, sometimes proximal ones entire, apex acute, sometimes acuminate or obtuse. Inflorescence male simple or few-branched; often longer than the subtending leaf; glomerules 2-4, 2-5 mm in diam., remote; female spike shorter than leaves; bracts oblong-lanceolate, ca. 0.4 mm. Male flowers yellow-green, pedicellate or sessile, in bud ca. 1 mm; perianth lobes oblong-obovate, connate at base, subapically 2-corniculate; stamens 4; rudimentary ovary minute. Female flowers light green, pedicellate; perianth lobes 2(or 3), very unequal, abaxial lobe cymbiform, slightly shorter than achene, adaxial lobe ovate, 1/5 as long as abaxial lobe, membranous; staminodes oblong, 1/2 of length of fruit. Achene light brownish, sometimes with indistinctly dotted colored ring by margin, ovoid, ca. 0.5 mm, slightly compressed, oblique, smooth. Fl. Jun-Aug, fr. Aug-Nov.

The plants are used medicinally to relieve fever.

?Mossy rocks in moist shaded places in forests; 400-1500 m. S Anhui, Fujian, Guangdong, NE Guangxi, E Guizhou, W Hubei, Hunan, Jiangxi, Zhejiang [Myanmar].


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