Platostoma palustre

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Platostoma palustre
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
(unranked): Asterids
Order: Lamiales
Family: Lamiaceae
Genus: Platostoma
Species: P. palustre
Binomial name
Platostoma palustre
  • Geniosporum parviflorum Benth., 1830
  • Mesona chinensis Benth., 1861[1]
  • Mesona elegans Hayata, 1906
  • Mesona palustris Blume, 1826
  • Mesona parviflora (Benth.) Briq., 1897
  • Mesona philippinensis Merr., 1912
  • Mesona procumbens Hemsl., 1895
  • Mesona wallichiana Benth., 1848 [Illegitimate]
  • Platostoma chinense (Benth.) A.J.Paton, 1997

Platostoma palustre, commonly known as Chinese mesona, is a species of plants belonging to the genus Platostoma of the mint family. The species grows extensively in East Asia such as south east China and Taiwan preferring ravines, grassy, dry, and sandy areas.[3] The plants are from 15–100 cm high with hairy stems and leaves. The leaves are tear-drop shaped and serrated.[3]

The plants are referred to as xiancao (仙草, 仙人草, 仙草舅, 涼粉草) in Mandarin Chinese, sian-chháu (仙草) in Taiwanese, leung fun cho (涼粉草) in Cantonese, sương sáo in Vietnamese, and หญ้าเฉาก๊วย in Thai.[1]

Cut grass jelly

Use, cultivation and processing[edit]

Mesona is primarily used in making grass jelly.[1] The leaves and stems of the plant are dried and oxidized, much like tea, then processed into a jelly. The plant extracts of the black variant of grass jelly (Mesona palustris) have been reported to induce anti-diabetic, anti-cancer, and anti-diarrhea effects in pre-clinical research, all of which are possible due to the strong antioxidant nature of the extracts.[4]

P. palustre is cultivated on flat ground or areas with a slight slope. In Taiwan, this plant is often grown under fruit trees in fruit orchards as a secondary crop.[1] The plant is processed by harvesting all the aerial portions above the root. The portions are then partially dried and piled up in order to allow them to oxidize until they have darkened. After the oxidation, they are then thoroughly dried for sale.[1]


  1. ^ a b c d e "仙草". 台北市內雙溪森林藥用植物園編輯組. Archived from the original on 2012-03-21. "本品加水與少許鹹共同煎汁,添加少許澱粉漿可製成仙草凍,是夏天常吃的清涼飲品"
  2. ^ Platostoma palustre (Blume) A.J.Paton. In: The Plant List (2013). Version 1.1. Published on the Internet; [2015-7-18].
  3. ^ a b "Mesona chinensis in Flora of China".
  4. ^ Sasmita, Andrew; Ling, Anna (2017-10-01). Bioactivity of Mesona palustris (Black Cincau) as a Nutraceutical Agent. 1.

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