Flora of the Nilgiris

Family : Flora of Nilgiri Biosphere (Northern Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve)

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Cardiospermum halicacabum L. var microcarpum (Kunth) Blume

Leaf arrangement

Alternate distichous

Leaf Type

Leaf Shape

Lanceolate, Ovate

Leaf Apex


Leaf Base


Leaf Margin


Habit : A herbaceous vine.

Habitat and Distribution : Locally abundant in wasteland and disturbed ground, ready colonizer. Plains upto 900m.

Indigenous Information : Cattle fodder. Shoots are roasted to cure cold and pain in the knee joints. The leaves are cooked as vegetables. The leaf and root are used to cure digestive problems.The leaf cooked with small onion and castor oil is used to cure vomiting.

Field Tips : The lower part of the pedicels transformed into spiral tendrils. Capsule sharply 3-lobed, not bloated, winged at angles.


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English : Balloon Vine
Irula : Sipotalie
Tamil : Modakanthan keerai


In axillary racemes or corymbs, white. Flowering from November-March.

Fruit :

A capsule, depressed, pyriform. Seeds 3, globose,  with a prominent white heart-shaped hilum. Fruiting from November-March.

All from Flora of Nilgiri Biosphere (Northern Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve)