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Boerhavia diffusa in AP W IMG 8081.jpg
Boerhavia diffusa
Scientific classification e
Kingdom: Plantae
Clade: Angiosperms
Clade: Eudicots
Order: Caryophyllales
Family: Nyctaginaceae
Tribe: Nyctagineae
Genus: Boerhavia

See text

Boerhavia is a genus of over 100 species in the four o'clock flower family, Nyctaginaceae.[1] Some species are annuals and others perennials. In habit they generally are herbaceous.

Common names include spiderlings and hogweeds. "Spiderling" refers to the appearance of those species that bear inflorescences on numerous long, slender stems, interlocking in a manner suggestive of a spider or spider's web.

The genus was named for Herman Boerhaave, a Dutch botanist, and the genus name is frequently misspelled "Boerhaavia".

Boerhavia species generally are native to warm tropical regions.

Selected species[edit]

Agricultural and horticultural significance[edit]

Several species of Boerhavia are of importance as agricultural and horticultural weeds. Some are valued as forage for grazing livestock, and some, such as Boerhavia erecta, also are of use as human food and folk medicine.



  1. ^ The Plant List (2013). Version 1.1. Published on the Internet; [1] (accessed 1st January)