Chamaecrista nictitans (PROSEA)

From PlantUse English
Jump to: navigation, search
Logo PROSEA.png
Plant Resources of South-East Asia
List of species

Chamaecrista nictitans (L.) Moench subsp. patellaria (Collad.) Irwin & Barneby var. ramosa (Vogel) Irwin & Barneby

Family: Leguminosae - Caesalpinioideae


  • Cassia patellaria DC. ex Collad.


Native to tropical America, introduced locally into Java.


Cover crop producing a good ground cover but limited amounts of green matter. Its actual usefulness is yet to be confirmed.


  • Annual, softly pilose, sometimes subwoody herb up to 1 m tall.
  • Leaves pinnately compound with 10-30 pairs of leaflets; petiole with a gland below proximate pair of leaflets; leaflets linear-oblique, 7-15 mm × 1.5-3 mm, midrib close to distal margin.
  • Inflorescence an axillary or supra-axillary raceme with 1-4 flowers; pedicel 2-4 mm long.
  • Petals of unequal size, obovate or orbicular, 4-6 mm long; stamens 9, 4 large and 5 small ones.
  • Pod strap-shaped, 2.5-3.5 cm × 3-4 mm, black, dehiscent, 6-10-seeded.
  • Seed rhomboid, about 4 mm × 3 mm, glossy dark brown.

This plant is naturally well-supplied with root nodules and is free from common pests. It is considered a weed in Brazil. It resembles Chamaecrista mimosoides (L.) E. Greene, but grows more slowly than C. lechenaultiana (DC.) Degener.

Selected sources

  • Burkill, I.H., 1966. A dictionary of the economic products of the Malay Peninsula. 2nd Edition. 2 volumes. Ministry of Agriculture and Co-operatives, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. 2444 pp.
  • de Wit, H.C.D., 1956. The genus Cassia in Malaysia. Webbia 11: 197-292.
  • Heyne, K., 1950. De nuttige planten van Indonesië [The useful plants of Indonesia]. 3rd Edition. 2 volumes. W. van Hoeve, the Hague, the Netherlands/Bandung, Indonesia. 261, 1450 pp.
  • Irwin, H.S. & Barneby, R.C., 1982. American Cassiinae: a synoptical revision of Leguminosae tribe Cassieae subtribe Cassiinae in the New World. Memoirs of the New York Botanical Garden Volume 35, 2 parts: 1-908.


  • M.S.M. Sosef & L.J.G. van der Maesen