Flora of the Nilgiris

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

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Mimosa pudica L.

Leaf arrangement

Alternate distichous

Leaf Type


Leaf Shape

Elliptic, Oblong

Leaf Apex


Leaf Base


Leaf Margin


Habit : A small spreading herb.

Habitat and Distribution : Common on moist and ungrazed places. Near riverbanks, bunds of arable lands, fallow lands and water courses. Found in plains from the coast to 1300m. Native of South America, now pantropical.

Indigenous Information : The root of the plant and lime is mixed with soil taken from crab burrows. This paste is applied to heal swelling due to evil spells. Veterinary medicine is prepared with the whole plant.

Other relevent information : Roots and leaves are used in traditional medicine.

Field Tips : Leaves fold when touched.


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English : Touch Me Not
Irula : Thotta Surangi
Tamil : Thotta Surungi
Hindi : Chui mui, Lajvanti
Malayalam : Thottavadi


In axillary or in clusters, pink. Flowering throughout the year.

Fruit :

A pod, clustered, flat, bristles along the margins. Seeds 2-5, compressed, ovoid. Fruiting throughout the year.

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