Commelina diffusa

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Location collected: Paies, Palikir
Date collected: November 28,1999
Collected by: Harry Saul

Synonym: Commelina nudiflora
Alternate identification: Commelina diffusa f. Rapholophora vitiensis Burm. f.

1. Genus Species- Commelina diffusa
2. Family- Commelinaceae (Spiderwort Family)
3. English name- Commelina, dayflower
4. Chuukese name-pwa
5. Kosraean name- [maa, but maa means "grass"]
6. Pohnpeian name - Rehn kasoarahn
7. Yapese name-Kamakahr
8. Growth form- Annual erect to decumbent herb.
9. Growth location- Aquatic
10. Growth environment- Savannah
11. Growth zone- Tropical
12. Average height- 40cm long
13. Stem- up 40cm long, glabrous, rooting at the nodes.
14. Leaf arrangement- Alternate, simple, blade lanceolate, 3-10x 1-5cm, acute to acuminate at the apex, rounded to cuneate at the base, sheath 1-2.8 cm long, ciliate on the upper edge.
15. Stipule-absent
16. Petioles- 1cm
17. Leaf blade- blade lanceolate, subssessile leaves with parallel veins, strongly nerved leaf sheaths around the stem
18. Inflorescence- A few flowered cyme opposite a leaf, enclosed or protruding from a cordate.
19. Floral bracts- absent
20. Flower- 3 blue petal flowers on one branch
21. Calyx- of 3 lanceolate to ovate, unequal sepals 2-5mm long.
22. Corolla- 3 unequal blue petals 5-9 mm long, upper 2 reniform, lower one ovate, smaller.
23. Stamen- Stamen 3, staminodes 3, free.
24. Ovary- Ovary superior,
25. Style- 3 celled
26. Fruits- an ovoid capsule 6-10 mm long, enclosed within the spathe.
27. Seed- containing 5 pitted seeds.
28. Anything else- Commmelina diffusa is probably native to tropical Asia, but was an ancient introduction to the island as far east as Samoa, and a European introduction in Hawwaii and elsewhere. It is occasional to locally abundant in relatively wet, disturbed places, such as taro patches, roadside ditches, and disturbedforest, at up to 1200m elevation, especially in Samoa. It can be troublesome weed in wetlandcrops.
29. Cultural usage- Ghost medicine (UHMWU- LAB)!!!

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