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Chinese Plant Names | Family List | Loganiaceae | Strychnos

Strychnos angustiflora Benth.


Description from Flora of China

Strychnos usitata Pierre ex Dop var. cirrosa Dop.

Lianas to 10 m, glabrous except for inflorescences and flowers. Branchlets with 2--5 cm axillary tendrils; older branches with axillary thorns. Petiole 4--6 mm; leaf blade ovate, elliptic, or suborbicular, 3--8 X 2--4 cm, leathery, base obtuse to rounded or sometimes slightly cordate, apex acute to obtuse, basal veins 3--5, lateral veins more delicate than midvein. Thyrses terminal, 2--4 cm, pubescent. Flowers 5-merous, 8--11 mm. Calyx lobes ovate to triangular, 1--1.5 mm, outside puberulent. Corolla white, salverform; tube 4--5 mm, throat and base of lobes with long woolly hairs; lobes narrowly oblong, ± as long as tube. Stamens inserted at mouth or corolla tube, ca. 2 mm; filaments filiform, longer than anthers; anthers oblong, exserted, base glabrous. Pistil ca. 1 cm, glabrous. Ovary ovoid, ca. 0.7 mm. Style slender. Berries orange when ripe, globose, 2--4 cm in diam., smooth, 1--6-seeded. Seeds pale yellowish gray, orbicular, flat, 1--1.8 cm in diam., covered with extremely fine sericeous hairs. Fl. Apr-Jun, fr. Jul-Dec.

The seeds, bark, and young leaves contain the poisonous alkaloids strychnine and brucine, which are used to treat sore throats and for antiswelling.

Open woodlands, scrub; 300--800 m. Fujian, Guangdong, Guangxi, Hainan, S Yunnan [Philippines, Thailand, Vietnam]


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