a-KANTH-us — Greek: ákantha (thorn); also spine or spikeDave’s Botanary
il-liss-ee-FOH-lee-us — having leaves like a hollyDave’s Botanary
commonly known as: holly-leaved acanthus, holly-leaved bear’s breech, holly mangrove, sea holly • Bengali: হাড়গোজা hargoza, কটকি kataki, নীল টেংরাকাঁটা nila tenrakanta • Gujarati: હરગોજા hargoja, કાંટાળીયો kantaliyo Hindi: हड़कत harkata • Kannada: ಹೊಳೆ ಚುಳ್ಳಿ hole chulli, ಕಂಡ್ಲಾ ಚುಳ್ಳಿ kaandla chulli • Konkani: मारांडो maramdo • Malayalam: ചുള്ളി chulli, ചുള്ളിക്കണ്ടൽ chullikkantal, പയിങ്ങാച്ചുള്ളി payingngaachchulli • Marathi: मारांडी marandi, निवगूर nivagur, वागाटी vagati • Odia: ହାକୁଚ କଣ୍ଟା hakucha kanta, ହାଡ଼କାଠ harda katha, ହାଡ଼କଞ୍ଚି hardakanchi • Sanskrit: हरीकुसा harikusa • Tamil: ஆற்றுமுள்ளி arru-mulli, கழுதைமுள்ளி kalutai-mulli, கோழிமுள்ளி koli-mulli, உப்புக்கரிநீர்முள்ளி uppu-k-kari-nir-mulli • Telugu: అలస్యకంప alasyakampa, అలిసి alisi, ఏటిచిల్ల etichilla, తూడిచిల్ల thude chulli • Tulu: ತುದೆಚುಳ್ಳಿ tudechulli • Urdu: هڙکت harkata
Names bibliography at https://dineshvalke.blogspot.com/2020/09/acanthus-ilicifolius-l.html
Native to India, Sri Lanka, Asia, Malesia, Australia and Pacific Islands. 

Acanthus ilicifolius@Devbagh beach resort.:
Acanthus ilicifolius @Devbagh beach resort.
A mangrove species.


[Efloraofindia_ Acanthus ilicifolius_031211PD04_ Flora of Odisha]:
Odisha is globally well known for the amphibians in plant kingdom, the mangroves. Located in the deltaic region formed by the rich alluvial deposits of Brahmani, Baitarani and the Mahanadi, Dhamra River, orissa in gereral and Bhitarkanika in perticular is the second largest mangrove ecosystem in the world after Papua New Guinea in terms of species diversity. There are 62 species of mangrove found in Bhitarkanika which includes 32 true mangroves and the rest are assocites. Heritiera kanikensis is Endemic to bhitarkanika.
With this background i wl post some of my earlier images of mangroves and their associates that i had taken during my association with Regional Research lboratory (RRL) now known as Institute of Minerals and Materials technology (IMMT), Bhubeneswar as a Senior Research Felow on mangrove physiology.
Dear members sending the photograph of Acanthus ilicifolius from Bhitarkanika

Name of the species: Acanthus ilicifolius
Family: Acanthaceae
Place of collection: Bhitarkanika, Kendrapada, Odisha
Habit: Perennial herb
Habitat: Wild, Wet evergreen forest

Yes truly ilicifolius

This species (The root) is having very useful medicinal properties and used to treat bone fracture among other uses.

The flowers are much liked by Black Beetles common in Bhitarkanika. It is polyphagus but prefers Acanthus ilicifolius flowers. I received specimen from the region many times and forwarded it to the Entomologists but failed to get correct identification.
It reminds me of Chrysolina madrasae beetles feeding on Blumea lacera as I reported it on Blumea as first record during my undergraduate studies.
Oudhia, P. and B.S. Thakur. 1996. New record of the leaf beetle on a weed. Current Research 25:218.

There is one more aspect of A. ilicifolius. The population of A. ilicifolius is a good indication of how healthy that particular mangrove forest is. If the population of this species is hight to very high, it is an indication of degraded land. That is to say, a healthy mangrove forest would have a limited population of A. ilicifolius!

Absolutely right … this one of the ecological aspect of Mangroves and i can say as bioindication. Now a days the population of a. ilicifolius has come up to Rajnagar, around 60 km from estuary where once magrove was dominated. I found so many large patch of A. ilicifolius in Bhitarkanika.

Wild plant ID request – RK54 – 12-Dec-2012:
Request id of this plant from Vasai region. It is around 3 feet tall. The plant has spines and the leaves too have sharp spines.

Reminds me of Ilex aquifolium, but I may be wrong.

This is Acanthus ilicifoliuscommonly known as Sea Holy. A common Mangrove associate.

Yes Acanthus ilicifolius


Flora of Kaiga – Kali river 18052013PJ2 :  Attachments (1).  1 post by 1 author.

Sharing Acanthus ilicifolius, a mangroves of River Kali. These areas are ideal for nature study, bird watching , boating, fishing etc..
Date/Time-: 2/05/13 – 08:30am
Location- Place, Altitude – Kaiga , Uttar Kannada ,Karnataka, 380 mtrs
Habitat- Garden/ Urban/ Wild/ Type- Wild
Plant Habit- Tree/ Shrub/ Climber/ Herb- Tree
Height/Length- 1-2m


Interesting plants of AJCB Indian Botanic Garden: SEA HOLLY (Acanthus ilicifolius ) from Shibpur, Howrah, India: SCFEB29 :  Attachments (1). 2 posts by 2 authors.
Acanthus ilicifolius L. (Acanthaceae)

commonly known as Holly-leaved Acanthus, Sea Holly, and Holy Mangrove is a species of shrubs or herbs, of the plant family Acanthaceae, native to India, Sri Lanka, Asia, Malesia, Australia and Pacific Islands.
It is a small shrub growing along lakes and marshes and sea shores. It is used as medicine in asthma and rheumatism.


Konkan, May 2014 :: Acanthus ilicifolius :: 27MAY2014 :: ARK-14 :  6 posts by 4 authors. Attachments (6).
Requesting to please validate the ID (Acanthus ilicifolius) of this mangrove captured in a small village near the Konkan coast, Devgad, Maharashtra in May 2014.

So beautiful images.

Very beautiful flowers, seeing for the first time.. thanks for showing …

Beautiful pictures. Have yet to see this plant.

…, one plant is in Sagar Upvan….

at Vaghbil, Thane on April 27, 2008
in Sindhudurg on May 13, 2012

nice. holly leaved violet / white flowers of acanthaceae

Acanthaceae Fortnight:: Acanthus ilicifolius :: NSJ-05 : 1 post by 1 author.
Acanthus ilicifolius (Sea Holly – Mangrove flower) Near Mahul, Mumbai

Acanthaceae fortnight SN 11 : 1 post by 1 author. Attachments (1)
Acanthus ilicifolius L., erect stiff mangrove herb from Calicut, Kerala

Acanthaceae Fortnight :: Acanthus ilicifolius :: Salim Ali WLS, Goa :: ARKMAR-60/72 : 1 post by 1 author. Attachments (4)
Attached are pictures of Acanthus ilicifolius captured at Salim Ali WLS, Goa in May 2014.


Acanthus ilicifoliusfrom Mumbai.
locally known as Marandi.


Acanthaceae Fortnight ::Acanthus ilicifolius :: Navi Mumbai::: PKA-MAR102/102:: : 1 post by 1 author. Attachments (7)
Acanthus ilicifolius from Navi Mumbai:

Plant for ID-PC-27-24.08.2015 : 8 posts by 5 authors. Attachments (3)
Please identify the plant from Warsaw University green house. I will be grateful.

It seems Acanthus ilicifolius to me (aka Sea Holly)

Acanthus Species for sure.

Looks like Acanthus ilicifolius L: Check these websites :

I agree with Acanthus ilicifolius as the most likely ID.

via Species‎ > ‎A‎ > ‎Acanthus ilicifolius
Read more at Flowers of IndiaDiscussions at efloraofindiamore view(s) in flickrDownload KML, and view in Google Earth

commonly known asholly-leaved acanthusholly mangrovesea holly • Bengalihargoza • Hindiहड़कत harkata •Kannadaಹೊಳೆಸುಳ್ಳಿ holesulli • Konkaniमारांडो maramdo • Malayalamചക്കരമുള്ള് chakkaramullii • Marathiमारंडी marandiवागाटी vagati • Sanskritहरीकुसा harikusa • Tamilகழுதைமுள்ளி kalutaimulli • Teluguఆలస్యకంప alasyakampa • Urduهڙکت harkata
botanical names: current – Acanthus ilicifolius • synonymsAcanthus doloariuDilivaria ilicifolia

Please click on any name listed for this plant to view bibliographical details, AND if you would like to

  • provide any (new) name(s) in native script
  • comment and let know if it is in error
  • add any belief OR reasoning OR interesting note for its derivation

If you know of any name(s) for this plant not listed here, please comment by clicking here.
If you know that the botanical name is no longer current accepted name, please comment by clicking here.

The contents in the above post shows a typical page of my site.
The site is very closely associated to our group and Flowers of India site and draws inspiration from both of them. xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxThe site makes an attempt to gather and share common names of the plants found in our country. My favourite say: The common names are just as important as the scientific names. Strangely — 1) some of the names are not common at all, and we may find them not known to us — 2) some of the common plants have no name at all !!
Started the first page somewhere in Dec 2010, and to date have finished compiling just about 30 species of Acanthaceae.
Building of the site is going to be a slow perennial process. Present activity is populating the names of native plants.
The main focus of the site is validating the names that are put there, therefore the members of this group are earnestly requested to point out errors in the common names listed for the species. The regional names put in native script require stricter attention in terms of incorrect spelling.
Members are also requested to provide any names that are not found listed for the species.
Comments which help know the derivation of the common names are more than welcome.
As such the site is not botanically inclined; comment(s) earnestly sought from members with scientific background for maintaining the accuracy of species’ current (accepted) name and the synonym(s) listed.
As and when time permits, I would be posting every species page in this group as a post to solicit validation of names from members of our group.
Needless to say, critical comments are more than welcome to make the site easier to use.

Thats going to be nice and informative. I will have a proper look after my deadline.
There is no need to write CURRENT before names.
Because there is no current and previous name, there is just one name to a plant. When you say basionym then it means it is the name on
which other name is based.
Synonyms could be Synonyms and Basionyms. You may point on that.
You can also say Ilex leaved Acanthus as the name of the plant itself suggests. Holly is the common name for Ilex (ilex)….
Just a few thought…

It looks good, …
I strongly suggest you to include author citation for all botanical names, incl. accepted names, basionyms, and synonyms. The (author) names should be in abbreviated form following Brummitt & Powell’s book “Authors of Plant Names” or the related database. I earlier suggested the same for FOI site as well.pl also include family name for all taxa.at later stage, you may also like to provide the occurrence and distribution, brief description (not a technical one), local uses etc. for the benefit of users 🙂

…, many thanks for the pointer towards author citation … BUT am a little nervous about getting into it (ideally need not, with so many friends around me with clear knowledge).
Yet would rather take someone’s help in this regard who will provide me with this data for every species that I post here.
Hopefully some friend(s) will come forward.Pankaj. many thanks for setting right the thoughts about “current” name … will soon incorporate it into my notes along with stress on synonyms (and basionym).
And thanks too for the ilex name … will add it.

… forgot to respond to your other points.

About putting family names: had given a thought to it prior to settling at species level.
Cross-linking to each entlty becomes more and more cumbersome, especially when a change has to be effected.
Moving a whole lot of genera from one family into another will become more than a tough job.
“Names of Plants in India” is concentrated on getting to common names of a plant (read: particular species) as well as knowing different plants sharing a name,
Thus names and species are cross-indexed.
Occurrence, distribution, brief description, importance and uses are not in the scope of this site.
BUT it would be a great thing to happen if any person(s) keen about any of the subject(s) would go ahead to make sub-site(s).
Will be glad to give any starting assistance.
Later, at a macro-level all such information can be collated to form a detailed page for each species.

Thanks …, for the response.
Everything depend on the aim of the site. If it is intended mainly for local users to know more about the plant, then the plant should be introduced by its local / common name. Botanical name becomes secondary and it is an additional information.
If it is in the line of eflora, and for international reference, then it should be in taxonomically acceptable form (with full author citation, family names, references, etc.).
You know the taxonomic databases to be referred for accepted name and author citation, GRIN, GBIF, IPNI to name a few. There is no authentic plant database which doesn’t provide author citation for the botanical names, u know that. And verifying the already prepared list for correctness will not be a problem for any botanist here, incl me.
I understand all the data are stored in a database and viewed in the species page. Therefore making changes in selected fields in the database (it automatically should reflect in the species page) shouldn’t be a problem i hope. Pl correct me if i am wrong.
Its not that only family names will change, even botanical names and/or their status may change anytime. (wonder how dynamic the taxonomy is !?). So any database needs regular update to stay up-to-date.

The intention of the site is to gather the common names of plants in India and validate them.
The plant is introduced by its Latin name because it is unique and not shared.
When in case there are instances of a Latin name with more than one author, their authors’ names will follow them for sake of differentiation. xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxAt NPGS / GRIN … http://www.ars-grin.gov/cgi-bin/npgs/html/taxon.pl?1079
… put as Acanthus ilicifolius L. … no synonyms put at present.
Not able to understand the format at IPNI … http://www.ipni.org/ipni/idPlantNameSearch.do?id=84648-3
GBIF at http://data.gbif.org/species/14807706/ has Acanthus ilicifolius Lour. … was not able to know where the synonyms are putAt some other places on WWW
1) Acanthus ilicifolius Linn. Synonyms: Acanthus doloariu Blanco., Acanthus ebracteatus val., Acanthus volubilis Wall., Dilivaria ilicifolia Nees. (Juss )
2) Acanthus ilicifolius L. Synonym: Acanthus volubilis Wallich.
Have stayed far away from gathering data related to botanical name citations because of differing abbreviations (implying different authors AND / OR different syntax).
The data is not stored in database format.
In the given circumstances, change in status of botanical name is the least that can be afforded (time-wise and efforts-wise).
The site and its contents at present are viewable only to our group … as such is matter for discussing / validating the common names … not to be considered as database.
Please note this response is copied to ITPMods, and cut from the entire group.

Thanks …, for the clarification. These are my responses for your queries:

1. Use of two names L. and Linn. is accepted only for Linnaeus (may be due to the long usage of Linn.). So its OK if you use either of these. But nowadays only L. is used. Using Linn. in not a mistake.
2. GRIN doesn’t provide all synonyms. There may be too many (remember recent posts by Dr.Pankaj listing large number of synonyms for one taxon) synonyms, and its not necessary to include all. These are included generally only by revisioners. Revd. Hb. to Flora of Ceylon provides detailed note on synonyms. We generally use only popular names and not all synonyms.
3. IPNI just lists all botanical names and doesn’t distinguish accepted and synonyms.
4. GBIF takes records from IPNI, so we need to cross check for author citation if we refer this facility.
5. In case of authority for the name Acanthus ilicifolius, both Loureiro (Lour.) and Linnaeus (L.) have used the same name for describing the species. May be Lour. was unaware of L.’s publication. Since L. published it (in 1753) before the publication of Lour. (in 1790), the Principles of Priority Rule of ICBN applies here. The earliest published name is accepted and the latter in this case is a latter homonym which is invalid.
Experts in the group may like to throw more light on this.
So, while providing authority we generally refer more than one sources, and we go into details if we find discrepancies. After all our wish is to ensure correctness rather than multiplying mistakes made in some websites.
BTW, please send me the list of Tamil names for verification. I would love to go through that.

Many thanks … for the clarifications.
Here is the list of Tamil names that have got populated in the site.

If you find any discrepancies OR would like to comment on any other aspect please do so by posting it to our group.
It will help people gain interest in the site’s contents.

Can’t believe that you are a nonbotnist.

a-KANTH-us — Greek: ákantha (thorn); also spine or spike … Dave’s Botanary
il-liss-ee-FOH-lee-us — having leaves like a holly … Dave’s Botanary.commonly known as: holly-leaved acanthus, holly-leaved bear’s breech, holly mangrove, sea holly • Bengali: হাড়গোজা hargoza, কটকি kataki, নীল টেংরাকাঁটা nila tenrakanta • Gujarati: હરગોજા hargoja, કાંટાળીયો kantaliyo Hindi: हड़कत harkata • Kannada: ಹೊಳೆ ಚುಳ್ಳಿ hole chulli, ಕಂಡ್ಲಾ ಚುಳ್ಳಿ kaandla chulli • Konkani: मारांडो maramdo • Malayalam: ചുള്ളി chulli, ചുള്ളിക്കണ്ടൽ chullikkantal, പയിങ്ങാച്ചുള്ളി payingngaachchulli • Marathi: मारांडी marandi, निवगूर nivagur, वागाटी vagati • Odia: ହାକୁଚ କଣ୍ଟା hakucha kanta, ହାଡ଼କାଠ harda katha, ହାଡ଼କଞ୍ଚି hardakanchi • Sanskrit: हरीकुसा harikusa • Tamil: ஆற்றுமுள்ளி arru-mulli, கழுதைமுள்ளி kalutai-mulli, கோழிமுள்ளி koli-mulli, உப்புக்கரிநீர்முள்ளி uppu-k-kari-nir-mulli • Telugu: అలస్యకంప alasyakampa, అలిసి alisi, ఏటిచిల్ల etichilla, తూడిచిల్ల thude chulli • Tulu: ತುದೆಚುಳ್ಳಿ tudechulli • Urdu: هڙکت harkatabotanical namesAcanthus ilicifolius L. … synonymsAcanthus doloarin Blanco • Dilivaria ilicifolia (L.) Juss. … status at The Plants List (2013). Version 1.1.

Bibliography / etymology
~~~~~ ENGLISH ~~~~~
holly-leaved acanthus
holly-leaved bear’s breech
holly mangrove
sea holly
~~~~~ BENGALI ~~~~~
হরগজা haragoza
  • Many thanks to Hasan Mehedi for this name in his post at facebook
  • Common Indian Wild Flowers, a book by Isaac Kehimkar
কটকি kataki
  • Many thanks to Hasan Mehedi for this name in his post at facebook
নীল টেংরাকাঁটা nila tenrakanta
  • Many thanks to Hasan Mehedi for this name in his post at facebook
~~~~~ GUJARATI ~~~~~
હરગોજા hargoja
કાંટાળીયો kantaliyo
~~~~~ HINDI ~~~~~
हड़कत harkata
~~~~~ KANNADA ~~~~~
ಹೊಳೆ ಚುಳ್ಳಿ hole chulli
ಕಂಡ್ಲಾ ಚುಳ್ಳಿ kaandla chulli
~~~~~ KONKANI ~~~~~
मारांडो maramdo
~~~~~ MALAYALAM ~~~~~
ചുള്ളി chulli
  • Many thanks to VC Balakrishnan and Vinaya Raj V R for help with this name … facebook
ചുള്ളിക്കണ്ടൽ chullikkantal
  • Many thanks to VC Balakrishnan and Vinaya Raj V R for help with this name … facebook
പയിങ്ങാച്ചുള്ളി payingngaachchulli
  • Many thanks to VC Balakrishnan and Vinaya Raj V R for help with this name … facebook
~~~~~ MARATHI ~~~~~
मारांडी marandi
निवगूर nivagur
वागाटी vagati
~~~~~ ODIA ~~~~~
ହାକୁଚ କଣ୍ଟା hakucha kanta
ହାଡ଼କାଠ harda katha
ହାଡ଼କଞ୍ଚି hardakanchi
~~~~~ SANSKRIT ~~~~~
हरीकुसा harikusa
~~~~~ TAMIL ~~~~~
ஆற்றுமுள்ளி arru-mulli
  • for holly-leaved bear’s breech … Tamil lexicon [Madras], University of Madras
கழுதைமுள்ளி kalutai-mulli
  • Tamil lexicon [Madras], University of Madras
  • or simply முள்ளி mulli … for holly-leaved bear’s breech … Tamil lexicon [Madras], University of Madras
கோழிமுள்ளி koli-mulli
  • for holly-leaved bear’s breech … Tamil lexicon [Madras], University of Madras
உப்புக்கரிநீர்முள்ளி uppu-k-kari-nir-mulli
  • for holly-leaved bear’s breech … Tamil lexicon [Madras], University of Madras
~~~~~ TELUGU ~~~~~
అలస్యకంప alasyakampa
అలిసి alisi
ఏటిచిల్ల etichilla
తూడిచిల్ల thude chulli
~~~~~ TULU ~~~~~
ತುದೆಚುಳ್ಳಿ tudechulli
~~~~~ URDU ~~~~~
هڙکت harkata
~~~~~ x ~~~~~


Plant for ID: Koonammavu: Kerala: 8/7/2021: 3 images.
Please help ID this wild plant that grows beside a waterbody in Koonammavu, Kerala. The area has saline water.
This plant is 4-6 feet tall, and produces small, light purple flowers. This is unfortunately not the flowering season.

A guess: Ilex aquifolium– in the absence of flowers and fruits it is a wild guess.

Acanthus ilicifolius

Ilex aquifolium does not look right since this plant does not have the characteristic red fruits.
Acanthus ilicifolius looks right, https://sites.google.com/site/efloraofindia/species/a—l/a/acanthaceae/acanthus/acanthus-ilicifolius. I am surprised that some plants have leaves with straight margins, and some have holly-like leaves.

That is why I said it is a guess in the absence of fruits or flowers in your posting. Thanks … for the correct ID.


Acanthus ilicifolius L. :: Waghbil, Thane, Maharashtra :: Apr 27, 2008 · JUN23 DV179: 1 image.

Acanthus ilicifolius L.
Waghbil, Thane, Maharashtra :: Apr 27, 2008 · 5:16 PM IST :: about 3 m (10 ft) asl
Earlier uploaded at efloraofindia


Acanthus ilicifolius L. :: Shirgaon, Palghar :: Feb 26, 2023 · JUN23 DV413: 2 images.

Acanthus ilicifolius L.
Shirgaon, Palghar :: Feb 26, 2023 · 12:09 PM IST :: about 14 m (46 ft) asl
Many thanks to Radha Veach and Bharat Godambe for validating the ID at iNaturalist