S. NAZIMUDDIN AND M. QAISER
Vitis trifolia Linn.
A weak herbaceous climber, woody at base, stem more or less succulent, compressed, densely and shortly pubescent; tendril leaf opposed much branched, wiry, not spirally coiled, ending in adhesive disc. Leaves pinnately trifoliate, petiole 2-5 cm long, pubescent; leaflets ovate or obovate acute or obtuse, crenate-serrate, terminal leaflet cuneate at base, lateral leaflets slightly oblique or obtuse, pubescent on both side, somewhat fleshy and thick, 3-6 x 2-3 cm, lateral ones smaller, petiolate, petiole 2-8 mm long, stipule oblong c.3 mm long. Inflorescence axillary or terminal, leaf opposed dichotomous cymes. Peduncle 4-7 cm long, pubescent. Flower green c. 2.5 x 2 mm, pedicel c. 2 mm calyx obscure, truncate. Petals 4, greenish white, distinct, spreading, hooded at apex c. 2 x 1 mm, oblong, slightly pubescent at side. Disc 4 lobed, adnate to the base of ovary, style stout, subulate, c. 1 mm long; stigma discoid. Berry black, globose, 3-4 seeded c. 1 cm across. Seeds triangular, rounded at the back with linear tubercle, wedged shaped at the face.
Type Herb. Linn. 149.5 (LINN).
Distribution: Throughout tropical parts of India, Pakistan, Burma, Ceylon & Malacca.
The roots, leaves and seeds of the plant are used in native medicine due to its very acrid properties. The fruit is edible, pleasently acidic in taste.