Stachytarpheta jamaicensis

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Stachytarpheta jamaicensis
Stachytarpheta jamaicensis at Aanakkulam.jpg
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
(unranked): Asterids
Order: Lamiales
Family: Verbenaceae
Genus: Stachytarpheta
Species: S. jamaicensis
Binomial name
Stachytarpheta jamaicensis
(L.) Vahl
Synonyms

Stachytarpheta indica Vahl[1]

Parantica aglea on Stachytarpheta jamaicensis

Stachytarpheta jamaicensis Is a species of plant in the Verbenaceae family. Native throughout the Caribbean, the species is commonly known as Blue porterweed or Jamaica vervain. It is pantropical, being found in the Indian Subcontinent, Southeastern Asia and West Tropical Africa, where it is known as Indian Snakeweed and Nettle-leaved vervain, formerly thought to be a separate species (Stachytarpheta indica).[2] It is usually found along country roadsides and it grows also well as a ruderal plant on disturbed terrain. It is an invasive species in some places.[3]

This plant can be also found on St. Croix, where it is locally known as "worryvine".

Medicinal usage[edit]

The fresh leaves are consumed in bush tea as a “cooling” tonic and blood cleanser, to treat “asthma” and “ulcerated stomachs”.[4]

Tea brewed from this species has been shown to cause a dose-dependent "fall in [the] blood pressure" of normal rabbits. However, the tea has also been observed to cause a "mild non-dose dependent systematic toxicity" in various tissues throughout the body, "such as congestion, fatty changes, and necrosis in liver, blood vessels, kidney, lung and testis, but the brain, eyes, intestines and heart were essentially normal." [5]

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