Alternanthera ficoidea (L.) R. Br. (syn: Achyranthes ficoides (L.) Lam.; Alternanthera flavogrisea subsp. diffusa (Mart.) Mears ex Fourn.; Alternanthera polygonoides var. diffusa (Mart.) Hicken; Alternanthera tenella Colla; Bucholzia ficoidea (L.) C. Mart.; Gomphrena ficoidea L.; Illecebrum ficoideum (L.) L.; Illecebrum tenellum (Desf.) Hort. ex Moq.; Paronychia ficoidea (L.) Desf.; Paronychia tenella Desf.; Steiremis ficoidea (L.) Raf.; Telanthera ficoidea (L.) Moq.);
Yucatan, Veracruz), Bolivia (Beni, Chuquisaca, Cochabamba, La Paz, Pando, Santa Cruz, Tarija), Argentina (Misiones), S-Brazil (Parana), Paraguay (Alto Paraguay, Central, Pres. Hayes), Costa Rica, Nicaragua, trop. Africa (I), Bahamas, Cuba, Hispaniola, Puerto Rico, Virgin Isl. (St. John, Tortola), Lesser Antilles (Barbados, Dominica, Grenada, Marie Galante, Martinique, Montserrat, St. Lucia, St. Vincent), Venezuela (Portuguesa, Zulia), Fiji (I), Guyana, Surinam, French Guiana, N-Brazil (Roraima, Para, Amazonas, Acre, Rondonia), NE-Brazil (Maranhao, Piaui, Ceara, Rio Grande do Norte, Paraiba, Pernambuco, Bahia, Alagoas, Sergipe), WC-Brazil (Mato Grosso, Goias, Distrito Federal, Mato Grosso do Sul), SE-Brazil (Espirito Santo, Sao Paulo), Trinidad, Tobago, Society Isl. (I) (Raiatea (I), Bora Bora (I)), Hawaii (I) (Oahu (I)), India (I), Bangladesh (I), Zambia (I), Rotuma Isl. (I) as per Catalogue of Life;
al-ter-NANTH-ur-uh — alternating antherDave’s Botanary
fy-KOY-dee-uh — fig-likeDave’s Botanary
ten-ELL-uh — small, delicate, tenderDave’s Botanary

Images by (Bhagyashri Ranade – Identified by D.S. Rawat), (Aarti Khale – Identified by D.S. Rawat), (Aarti Khale – Identified by Gurcharan Singh), Bhagyashri Ranade (Inserted by Bhagyashri Ranade)



commonly known as
: sanguinarea • Marathi: कुसळ kusal • Telugu: అడవి పున్నాగంటె అలము adavi punnaganti aalamu

Native to: Caribbean, southern America

Procumbent to erect semiwwoody herb; leaves broadly ovate to obovate, green or coloured, flowers in sessile axillary heads; tepals unequal, outer three broad, hairy, 3-ribbed at base, the inner two narrower; pseudostaminodes longer than stamens, lacerate at tip.
A. paronychoides is a soft stemmed plant of wet grounds, often found along banks of drains, streams and river banks. It is totally creeping and rooting herb; 
Alternanther paonychoides is, a much different plant, with delicate, smooth, creeping stems, and much smaller leaves;


Chenopodiaceae and Amaranthaceae Week: Alternanthera ficoidea (L.) P. Beauv. from Delhi and Dakpathar:  Alternanthera ficoidea (L.) P. Beauv. Fl. Oware 2:66, t. 99, fig. 1. 1818 “ficoides

Syn: Alternanthera tenella Colla; Gomphrena ficoideaL.
Common name: Parrotleaf
Procumbent to erect semiwwoody herb; leaves broadly ovate to obovate, green or coloured, flowers in sessile axillary heads; tepals unequal, outer three broad, hairy, 3-ribbed at base, the inner two narrower; pseudostaminodes longer than stamens, lacerate at tip.
Photographed from Delhi and Dakpathar.


[efloraofindia:Id 04022013MR1] Chenopodiaceae and Amaranthaceae Week: Alternanthera ficoidea at Pune: July 2012

Sharing images of Alternanthera ficoidea at Pune

Fine pics, even showing minute flowers. A very aggressive weed here in Pantnagar. Thanks for sharing.

Very nice clear pictures. Surprisingly there is no mention of the species in BSI Flora of Mah.

In most earlier books under the name A. tenella.

Yes … Very good photographs.


Chenopodiaceae and Amaranthaceae Week :: Alternanthera sp. Pune SMP5:  Attaching images of an Alternanthera from different locations at diff. times hoping that all are Alternanthera ficoidea

Superb pictures. ESP the striped pierrot.

Yes …, A. ficoidea to me too.

Yes …, A. ficoidea. Very good photographs


AMARANTHACEAE-CHENOPODIACEAE week DSR..012: Alternanthers ficoidea: Attaching the picture of Alternanthera ficoidea (L.) R.Br. ex Roem. & Schult. (Amaranthaceae) taken at Pantnagar Uttarakhand. It is widespread weed here all along the roads, trails.

Yes …


Chenopodiaceae and Amaranthaceae Week :: Alternanthera ficoidea : Mumbai : 100213 : AK-30:  A very small ornamental plant seen at Jijamata Udyan in Mumbai.

Posted on our group earlier and identified by … and …


Chenopodiaceae and Amaranthaceae Week :: Alternanthera ficoidea : Nasik : AK-9:  Sharing picture of Alternanthera ficoidea from Nasik seen growing wild in a Mango farm.

Yes … Very good photographs.


Chenopodiaceae and Amaranthaceae Week :: Alternanthera ficoidea : Muscat : 100213 : AK-19:

Sharing pictures of this cultivated, ornamental plant from here.

Posted and identified by … on our group earlier.

Looks very similar to my posted plant of A.sessilis….?

This was posted on our group earlier and identified by … (Garden Plant for ID 180111 AK-3)

That is the reason I posted my reply. Let others recheck it.

Alternanthera sessilis in FoC = (leaf) apex acute or obtuse
Alternanthera sessilis in FoP = (leaf) blunt to shortly acuminate at the apex
Alternanthera sessilis in FoNA = (leaf) obtuse to acute
Alternanthera ficoidea (L.) P. Beauv. in PIER = acute and mucronate at the apex, attenuate at base and narrowed along poorly defined petiole….

The plant in this thread doesn’t have acute leaf-apex but, certainly the apex is mucronate and it resembles the picture at the PIER site.


Alternanthera For ID : MNP,Mumbai : 260513 : AK-3 :  Attachments (1).  6 posts by 4 authors.

Alternanthera found growing wild in Maharashtra Nature Park, Mumbai on 22/4/13.

Small plant with tiny white flowers.

Id please.

Alternanthera tenella?

Alternanthera ficoides (L.) Sm. (=A.tenella Colla) as per the Plant List 2010.

I used Alternanthera as ground cover, but never got such lovely plants to grow.

Alternanthera For ID : Nasik : 150114 : AK-8 : Attachments (1). 3 posts by 2 authors.
A wild weed growing in our Nasik garden.

Picture taken on 3/12/13.

Could this be Alternanthera tenella?

Kindly confirm id.


Thanks for the id.


May 2014

Requesting Id of this wild plant with peculiar arrangement of leaves which are rough to touch.

not flowered as yet

If I have to guess, I will go for Alternanthera ficoides (Amaranthaceae). However, the flowers will appear soon to make ID easier.

??  Ruellia tuberosa L. of Acanthaceae

Thank you … and … for a possible Id. hope to see the flowers

the plant has flowered. attaching pics of the same. it is looking like Alternanthera ficoides (Amaranthaceae) as you have said. requesting to confirm the Id.

Yes it is A.ficoides. After few weeks it will make larger clusters of flowers in axil of leaves.

ANNOV29 Amaranthaceae for identification : 6 posts by 4 authors. Attachments (3)

October 2014

May be Alternantherea. A picture of the whole plant would help.

I forgot to click that one detail sir. I will find the plant and again and get the habit shot soon.

Alternanthera ficoides, I hope.

I think yes, Alternanthera ficoidea



SK806 16 OCT-2017:ID : 11 posts by 4 authors. Attachments (5)

Location: Dolakha, Nepal 
Date : 5 September, 2017
Elevation : 5600 ft

Sir looks Alternanthera species.

Alternanthera ficoidea.

Thank you all.

I guess it could be Alternanthera sessilis (L.) R.Br. ex DC.

Thanks, …, for the id.
Seems to match with images at Alternanthera ficoidea
Does not matches with images at Alternanthera sessilis

It is not listed in Nepal …!

Pl. check for its synonyms.

Alternanthera paronychioides A. St.-Hil. is listed in Nepal Checklist, which is a synonym of Alternanthera ficoidea as per GRIN(once known to be very reliable, but now I think have been shut down & link not opening). This is basically an American plant. So GRIN is going to be most reliable.

Thank you all. Need such a deep exploration.
Alternanthera ficoidea (L.) Sm.

Syn: Alternanthera paronychioides A. St.-Hil.


identification no020311sn1: Id. request.taken at my farm in mulshi,pune, in feb11
plant habit:–
height: spread along the ground

Flora of Haryana: Alternanthera ficoidea from NDRI Karnal campus: *Alternanthera ficoidea*
From NDRI Campus Karnal
Small annual Herb, wild


Date/Time-Sep 2011
Location- Place, Altitude, GPS-Pune
Habitat- Garden/ Urban/ Wild/ Type-Wild
Plant Habit- Tree/ Shrub/ Climber/ Herb- Herb
Height/Length- about 6 cms in ht
Leaves Type/ Shape/ Size- green
Flowers Size/ Colour/ Calyx/ Bracts-white flowers multipetals
Fruits Type/ Shape/ Size Seeds- not seen

Request for validation
Can it be Alternanthera ficoidea?
Date/Time-Sep 2011
Location-Place, Altitude, GPS-Pune
Habitat- Garden/ Urban/ Wild/ Type-Wild
Plant Habit-Tree/ Shrub/ Climber/ Herb- Herb
Height/Length- 6-8 cms
Leaves Type/ Shape/ Size-green
Flowers Size/ Colour/ Calyx/ Bracts- yellow in the centre white around

Fruits Type/ Shape/ Size Seeds- not seen

I think your id is right

Alternanthera for ID : 090711 : AK-2:    Found growing wild at Nasik, Maharashtra on 14/4/2008.
Again a very tiny plant with White flowers.
Is this ‘Khaki Weed’ or ‘Smooth Chaff Flower’ from Flowersofindia?
Alternanthera pungens or A paronychioides?

Please check Alternanthera paronychioides. It is not A.pungens because A. pungens stem is generally prostrate.

It is neither Alternanthera pungens (with broader leaves and shaply pungent perianth tips) nor A. paronychoides which is much softer plant. It could be A. ficoides which shows a lot of variation. I am uploading all three from my collection.

Alternanthera ficoides



efloraofindia:”For Id 30062012MR1’’ is this wild plant Alternanthera spp at Pune:   June 2012 Pune

Would appreciate your help to Id this wild plant ht about 2 feet, leaves 8 cms X 4cms and white flowers .

8_IMG_0770_1 shows an oblong green yellow structure about 1 cm in length I don’t know if it is the fruit. Is it some Alternanthera spp?

Its Alternanthera species of Amaranthaceae…..

this is Alternanthera species for sure, but i am equally sure that the plant in last pic 8_img_0770_1 does not posses that oblong structure.
it might be some part of other plant fallen on this plant. the fruit of an alternanthera species is an utricle which is enclosed in the bracts and is very small, almost equal to the flower. please check the plant part.

Thank you … for your reply. Fortunately the plant still exists where I had seen it. I have checked the plant for the oblong structure and it was no longer seen. You are right it must be a part of some other plant. There is a big tamarind tree around with flowers. As I was there a similar looking structure fell down probably it is a bud of the tamarind tree.

The wild plant has grown a little taller than before and what I observed today was that the flowers are in pairs at every point if that could help the species identification.

Yes of course it is Alternanthera, which some websites would make you believe as A. paronychioides

Alternanther paonychoides is, however, a much different plant, with delicate, smooth, creeping stems, and much smaller leaves:
This plant is Alternanthera ficoidea in which yellowish flowers often emerge from chaff like bracts.

The species is one of the most commonly cultivated edging plant and shows a lot of variability in cultivation, with species originally taken as distinct species having been merged.

Are attached photos Alternenthera ficoides and A. sessilis ? Please confirm the ID.
Time of collection : 27/09/2012 (Alternanthera ficoidea) & 03/10/2012 (A.sessilis)
Location : Bara Bazar Guwahati-12 (Assam)

Yes …


Herb ID request – RK5 – 11-Oct-201​2: This herb with small whitish flowers and hairy leaves in Karjat area … I think all plant parts were hairy.

Should be Alternanthera pungens….Amaranthaceae

It looks more of A. ficoidea (= A. tenella) to me.

Yes A. ficoidea

In A. pungens leaves are much different.


Alternanthera ID1 from Hooghly 21/10/12 sk1:

Very interesting find in “The Plant List” relating to FoI species :- FOI
Species : Alternanthera paronychioides A.St.-Hil. ?
H & H : wild herb in rural roadside, waste place, rail tracks
Date : 27/10/12, 3.50 p.m.
Place : Hooghly
Some similarities –

Alternanthera ficoidea

There are at least two Alternanthera ficoidea in The Plant List –

  1. accepted name Alternanthera ficoidea (L.) Sm. = syn. Alternanthera tenella Colla BUT NOT with any synonym as Gomphrena ficoidea.
  2. synonym Alternanthera ficoidea (L.) R. Br. = accepted name Alternanthera paronychioides A.St.-Hil. = syn. Gomphrena ficoidea L. BUT NOT with any synonym as Alternanthera tenella.
GRIN has Alternanthera ficoidea (L.) P. Beauv. = Alternanthera tenella Colla = Gomphrena ficoidea L. (basionym)

Which one do i take?

The Plant List seems to be making mess of things. I am tired of pointing out their mistakes. A. ficoidea (L.) Sm. is not recorded in IPNI, the most authentic source of Plant names. Please also note that in the Plant list there is no synonym which has Linnaeus as the author. If not Gomphrena ficoidea then what is the basionym of A. ficoidea (L.) Sm. My frequent advise to members that if the name exists in GRIN, it is better to follow it.
I agree there is lot of confusion in the net, but A. paronychoides is a soft stemmed plant of wet grounds, often found along banks of drains, streams and river banks. It is totally creeping and rooting herb. I have photographed and collected it both in Delhi and Kashmir.

So, i have now Alternanthera ficoidea (L.) P. Beauv.
Will try to find out Alternanthera paronychioides also.


Wild Flower for ID – 110112 – RK: Request ID. Pics taken at Hebbal Lake, Bangalore on 01-01-12 around
9am. Short, low-lying shrub/semi-creeper.

This looks like a species of Aerva.

Yes surely look like Aerva but a species quite new to me.

This may beAlternanthera pulchella Kunth please check it at once.

I looked up . & under Alternanthera, i found … image of the same flower identified as A. ficoidea – Sanguinarea – Family Amaranthaceae.Thank you all for helping. 

Yes, it is Alternanthera ficoidea (= A. tenella).

Yes Alternanthera ficoidea

This should be Alternanthera ficoidea

Alternanthera ficoidea (L.) Sm.
Also known by its synonym: Alternanthera tenella Colla
al-ter-NANTH-ur-uh — alternating antherDave’s Botanary
fy-KOY-dee-uh — fig-likeDave’s Botanary
ten-ELL-uh — small, delicate, tenderDave’s Botanary
commonly known as: sanguinarea • Marathi: कुसळ kusal • Telugu: అడవి పున్నాగంటె అలము adavi punnaganti aalamu
Native to: Caribbean, southern America
References: Flowers of IndiaNPGS / GRINPIER Further Flowers of Sahyadri by Shrikant Ingalhalikar

at Vaghbil, Thane on 25 JUL 10

Very good photographs.

at Vaghbil, Thane on 28 NOV 09

Great pictures … To me this looks like A. ficoidea mainly due to the gregarious habit with more or less erect branches, and stalked leaves.

Many thanks … for validating this post.

Was always thinking the contrary – that A. sessilis is of gregarious habit. Also had the thought that the width of leaves of A. ficoidea is larger than the length. Many thanks for straightening my thoughts. Will revise my notes at flickr very soon.


Chenopodiaceae and Amaranthaceae Week: RVS-3: Alternanthera ficoidea: Alternanthera ficoidea (= A. tenella), from Gujarat.



Chenopodiaceae and Amaranthaceae Week: BRS 8: Alternanthera sessilis: Sharing the images of Alternanthera sessilis from Chennai.

This is Alternanthera ficoidea (= A. tenella), I think.

Yes Alternanthera ficoidea

Very very thank you for confirming all species.

Plz id the herb: pa-01_30june2018 : 4 posts by 3 authors. Attachments (1)

May i request you to help in identifying this herb with small flowers?
A number of such plants were seen by me in Prabalmachi region recently. (4.7.18)

It is an Alternanthera sp. [Amaranthaceae]. Reminds me of A. ficoidea (L.) Sm.


Presenting few images of  Alternanthera ficoideavisited by Yellow Potter Wasp

Habit:    Herb

Habitat: Waste land

Sighting: Tumkur, Karnataka

Date:       18-09-2018

beware of them. bite is quite irritable contrary to whatever the net pages would get

Herb for ID, Anuppur, Madhya Pradesh NAW-JAN19-01 : 4 posts by 3 authors. Attachments (2)
Kindly identify this prostrate weed with spiny inflorescence, photographed in agricultural fields in Anuppur District, Madhya Pradesh in November 2018

Closest to Alternanthera ficoidea (Amaranthaceae).

Please compare with images in eFI.

Thank you all. As suspected, it is an alien invasive weed.

TH: photograph for identification : 4 posts by 3 authors. Attachments (3)- 2 mb or more.

Please help me to identify. This plant was collect from road side in Rajshahi, Bangladesh

I think its Alternanthera sp. Check with Alternanthera sessilis or Alternanthera ficoidea. 

Thanks, …, for the id.

To me also appear close to images at Alternanthera ficoidea (L.) P. Beauv.


On 21/9/08 in Hyderabad, AP; at Bhadreshwar, Hooghly, West Bengal on 24/10/2007; Delhi- Nov’09?; at Sirumalai hills, TN; Chennnai: september’ 10; 30th Oct.: Pench, MP; White sepal & Yellow petal-Samir Takaochi – efloraofindia | Google Groups Alternanthera paronychioides ? – indiantreepix | Google Groups ALTERNANTHERA SESSILIS – indiantreepix | Google Groups

ID Please: UV_09102019_2 : 5 posts by 4 authors. 2 images.

Please identify this plant at Nigadi, Pune, Maharashtra

Alternanthera ficoidea (L.) P.Beauv.
Please check Alternanthera.
Please stick to the rules in future as suggested by …!

Also furnish information’s like date of picture, elevation and habitat image.

Yes sir !


Prabalmachi  between Matheran and Panvel

Date: November 30, 2019 … Altitude: about 390 m (1,280 ft) asl

Alternanthera ficoidea  (L.) Sm.

Dear friends,
I believe this is Alternanthera ficoidea; please validate.

For me the ID is correct


Yeoor Hills  … part of Sanjay Gandhi National Park

Date: December 29, 2019 … Altitude range: about 100 ft (30 m) to 1575 ft (480 m) asl
Alternanthera ficoidea  (L.) Sm.


Amaranthaceae for ID : Bangalore : 04OCT20 : AK-10 : 7 posts by 4 authors. Attachments (2)

Seen growing wild.

Alternanthera Species?

Alternanthera sessilis

Sorry, …, it’s not sessilis, variety of ficoidea only,

Thanks, …, for the id.
I think many cultivars are coming of this as per

Or is it due to some deficiency ?

These were seen growing wild near a lake along with normal green colored ones.

In multiple places in that area, not just one.


Alternanthera sessilis ?? 091109 – NSD 93 – efloraofindia | Google Groups


On 21/9/08 in Hyderabad, AP; Pench tiger reserve- 30-12-04; Alternanthera tenella (Joy Weed)? – indiantreepix | Google Groups


Garden plant for ID :180111 : AK-3: Taken at Muscat, Oman on the 4th of March,2010.

It is a weed seen in wastelands and abandoned farms in Mumbai also.

Alternanthera pungens for me too.  Very common in Chennai as a weed.

Yes  Alternanthera pungens a weed in West Bengal too

Any other species of Alternanthera?

Yes … Your doubt is genuine. The leaves of A. pungens more or less rounded in outline, and perianth with sharper tips. This could be A. ficoidea.

I go for Alternanthera ficoidea

Ornamental Plant for ID : California : 27FEB15 : AK-25 : 2 posts by 2 authors. Attachments (1)
A cultivated ornamental seen in Sacramento on 7th Oct,14.

Cultivar of A. ficoidea

Alternanthera ficoidea

Alternanthera for ID : 090711 : AK-1: Taken at Jijamata Udyan, Mumbai, Maharashtra on 29/12/2007.
Very tiny leaves, a small plant, cultivated.

This is Alternathera ficoidea, now including several species formerly treated separately. Common edging plant. A. paronychioides is much different plant, recently uploaded by me.

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