Home >> Ethnobotany Plants - Part: M >> Mucuna pruriens (L) DC.

Mucuna pruriens (L) DC.

Group: Dicot
Family: Fabaceae - Pea family
Duration: Perennial
Growth Habit: Vine

Bangla/Vernacular Name: Alkushi, Bichchoti, Khamach, Bilaiachra.

Tribal Name: Eng Rhi Noi (Marma), Kru-kuch (Murang).

English Name: Common Cowitch, Cowhage.

Description of the Plant:

A slender, anual twiner. Leaves 3-foliolate; leaflets 7.5-12.5 cm long, the terminal one rhomboid-ovate, the lateral one with truncate base, very inequilateral, subacute, densely clothed with silvery-grey hairs beneath. Flowers purple, in elongate 6-30 flowered pendulous racemes, corolla purple. Pods turgid, falcately curved on both ends, densely clothed with darkbrown, persistent, irritant bristles.

Chemical Constituents:

The plant contains resin, tannin and fat. Seeds contain mucuadininine, prurieninine, prurieni-dine and small amount of nicotine. They also contain a plant growth-inhibiting allelochemical candidate, L-3, 4-dihydroxy-phenylalanine (Ghani, 2003). Seeds also contain 4% reddish viscous oil and the alkaloids, mucunine, mucunadine, mucuadine (Chopra et al., 1992).

Mode of Uses:

Paste prepared from leaves is applied to wounds and rupture. It has antiseptic property.


Throughout Bangladesh in village thickets and jungle.

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