Desmodium triflorum

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Desmodium triflorum
Desmodium triflorum at Kadavoor.jpg
Inflorescence in Kerala
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
(unranked): Rosids
Order: Fabales
Family: Fabaceae
Genus: Desmodium
Species: D. triflorum
Binomial name
Desmodium triflorum
(L.) DC.[1]
  • Hedysarum triflorum L.
  • Meibomia triflora (L.) Kuntze

Desmodium triflorum is an ornamental plant in the Fabaceae family. It is native to Florida, Hawaii, and some small areas of other southern states of the United States. It is a creeper, a vine that grows along the ground as opposed to growing up trees or buildings. It has three leaves with smooth edges and a white stripe up the middle, ranging from a bright white to a barely visible grey stripe, depending on the nutrients of the soil. The stems of the plants are either green, red, or both, with minuscule hairs along them. The seeds are in pods that cling to clothing and hair, not unlike velcro. The plant relies on this system to spread growth of the plant. D. triflorum is highly resistant to grazing or mowing, which makes it very difficult to get rid of.

The plant also contains a significant amount of the psychedelic dimethyltryptamine (DMT).[dubious ][citation needed] Some[who?] speculate that the Seminole Indians used this plant ritually to the same degree as peyote.[citation needed] The US Drug Enforcement Administration has attempted to criminalize this plant, but due to its commonness, neglected the effort, saying that too few people knew of its effect to be worried.[dubious ][citation needed]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Desmodium triflorum information from NPGS/GRIN". Retrieved 2008-04-28.