Vigna dalzelliana (PROSEA)

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Plant Resources of South-East Asia
List of species

Vigna dalzelliana (O. Kuntze) Verdc.

Protologue: Kew Bull. 24: 558 (1970).
Family: Leguminosae
Chromosome number: 2n= 22


  • Phaseolus pauciflorus Dalzell (1851), non G. Don (1832) nec Bentham (1837),
  • Phaseolus dalzellianus O. Kuntze (1891),
  • Phaseolus dalzellii Cooke (1902).

Vernacular names

  • Indochina: a re (Lâm Dông), re bo nhui (Thuân Hai)
  • India: mugavaine, mugavel, ranmug.

Origin and geographic distribution

The species is found in Thailand, Cambodia, Laos, Vietnam, the Philippines and India.


The seeds are used in the same way as green gram (Vigna radiata (L.) Wilczek). The whole plant is used as fodder and is excellent for soil conservation.


  • Slender climbing or creeping annual herb, 4-5 m long, with glabrescent stems, rooting at the nodes.
  • Leaves trifoliolate, petiole 1-6 cm long; leaflets widely ovate, 2-5 cm x 1.5-3 cm, acuminate, entire or faintly lobed.
  • Inflorescences in axillary racemes, 4-10 cm long, 2-5- flowered; bracteoles longer than the calyx; corolla 1 cm long, yellow.
  • Pods subcylindrical, 3-5 cm x 0.3 cm, 4-10-seeded, flattened.
  • Seeds reniform, 2-3 mm x 2 mm, brown.

In India flowering is in September-October, fruiting in October-November. Two varieties are distinguished: var. dalzelliana (leaflets ovate), and var. elongata Nguyên Van Thuân (leaflets linear to linear-lanceolate, only in Indochina).

The species resembles much V. minima (Roxb.) Ohwi & Ohashi and V. umbellata (Thunb.) Ohwi & Ohashi var. gracilis (Prain) Mar. Masch. & Stain.


Var. dalzelliana occurs especially on burned places in forests, on black soils, up to 2000 m altitude in the tropics. Var. elongata occurs mainly in gorges on sandy soils.


V. dalzelliana is a plant growing in the wild as a component of the ground flora of monsoon forests.


V. dalzelliana can be grown for purposes of soil conservation.


  • Babu, C.R., Sharma, S.K. & Johri, B.M., 1985. Leguminosae - Papilionoidae: Tribe - Phaseoleae. Bulletin of the botanical survey of India 27 (1-4): 14.
  • Nguyên Van Thuân, 1979. Flore du Cambodge, du Laos et du Viêt-Nam 17: 193-194.


  • P.C.M. Jansen