Ipomoea triloba (PROSEA)

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Plant Resources of South-East Asia
List of species

Ipomoea triloba L.

Protologue: Sp. pl. 1: 161 (1753).

Vernacular names

  • Three-lobed morning glory (En)
  • Malaysia: gegasing, kangkong bulu
  • Philippines: aurora (Sp, Tagalog), bang-ba-ngao (Iloko), muti-muti (Cebu Bisaya)
  • Thailand: yaa dok khon (north-eastern)
  • Vietnam: bìm ba thùy.


Native of tropical America, now a pantropical weed, also in Malesia.


The plant is used in Peninsular Malaysia in a poultice against headache.


An annual herb, stems twining or sometimes prostrate, 1-3 m long, glabrous or sparsely hairy; leaves broadly ovate to orbicular in outline, 2.5-8 cm × 2-7 cm, base cordate, basal lobes rounded or angular to lobed, apex rounded, margins coarsely dentate to more or less deeply 3-lobed, glabrous or sparsely pilose, petiole 3-10(-18) cm long, slender; flowers solitary or in a few-flowered cyme, peduncle 1-10 cm long, bracts minute; pedicel 2.5-8 mm long, sepals slightly unequal, 7-8 mm long, narrowly oblong, margins fimbriate, corolla funnel-shaped, 18-20 mm long, pink or pale red-purple, sometimes with a darker centre, filaments hairy at base, ovary hairy; capsule subglobular, 5-6 mm long, shortly mucronulate, bristly hairy; seeds 4 or less, 3.5 mm long, glabrous. I. triloba occurs in grassland, thickets, hedges, waste places, savanna forests, along roadsides, and occasionally on sandy beaches, from sea-level up to 750 m altitude. It can be found flowering throughout the year.

Selected sources

74, 134,

  • 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.

626, 1026.


Anna L.H. Dibiyantoro & G.H. Schmelzer