Acalypha hispida (PROSEA)

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Plant Resources of South-East Asia
List of species

Acalypha hispida Burm.f.

Protologue: Fl. ind.: 203, t. 61, fig. 1 (1768).


Acalypha densiflora Blume (1826).

Vernacular names

  • Red hot cat-tail, chenille plant (En)
  • Indonesia: buntut kuching (Malay, Jakarta), tali anjing (Sundanese), wunga tambang (Javanese)
  • Malaysia: buntut kuching, ekur kuching
  • Thailand: mai prom (northern), haang krarok daeng (central), huu plaa chon (southwestern)
  • Vietnam: tai tượng xanh, tai tượng duôi chồn.


Supposed to have originated in New Guinea, frequently cultivated elsewhere throughout Malesia and other tropical regions.


In Indonesia, the roots and flowers, fresh or in decoction, are considered a remedy for haemoptysis. The leaves are used to treat thrush. In Malaysia a decoction of the leaves and flowers is externally applied as an emollient to wounds and ulcers; internally it is used as a laxative and diuretic in gonorrhoea. The bark is applied as an expectorant in asthma.


A shrub up to 3 m tall; leaves ovate, 9-20 cm × 7-15 cm, base broadly cuneate, apex narrowly acute or obtuse, margin serrate, petiole 1-5(-10) cm long; female inflorescence pendulous, 10-50 cm long, thick, with a dense mat of crimson styles. In cultivation, usually var. sander (N.E. Br.) J.J. Smith is encountered, which has a more robust habit, larger green, slightly cordate leaves, with longer petioles and longer female inflorescences.

Selected sources

  • 31. Airy Shaw, H.K., 1972. The Euphorbiaceae of Siam. Kew Bulletin 26: 191-363.33, 35, 36, 74,
  • Burkill, I.H., 1966. A dictionary of the economic products of the Malay Peninsula. Revised reprint. 2 volumes. Ministry of Agriculture and Co-operatives, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Vol. 1 (A-H) pp. 1-1240, Vol. 2 (I-Z) pp. 1241-2444.

215, 407, 459, 662, 786, 813.


Arbayah H. Siregar