Indian Subcontinent to S. China and Philippines as per WCSP;
Angola; Benin; Borneo; Burkina; Burundi; Cameroon; Central African Repu; Chad; China South-Central; China Southeast; Congo; East Himalaya; Ethiopia; Gabon; Gambia; Guinea; Guinea-Bissau; Hainan; India; Ivory Coast; Kenya; Liberia; Madagascar; Malaya; Myanmar; Nepal; Nicobar Is.; Nigeria; Pakistan; Philippines; Rwanda; Senegal; Sri Lanka; Sudan; Sumatera; Taiwan; Tanzania; Thailand; Uganda;
Vietnam; West Himalaya; Zambia; Zare
as per Catalogue of life;
sperm-a-KOH-see — seed point, referring to the capsule being surrounded by calyx points
pus-ILL-uh — insignificant (or weak)
commonly known as: tiny false buttonweed • Hindi: सफेद फूली safed phooli • Marathi: तारकादळ tarakadal • Telugu: చుక్కకాడ tsukka-kada
Native to: tropical Africa, India, Sri Lanka 
S. ocymoides has narrowly winged stem, elliptic leaves, hairy corolla tube and inserted stamens.
S. pusilla has 4 angled stem, linear leaves, glabrous corolla tube and exserted stamens.

ID Request 050913SG-A :  Attachments (4). 2 posts by 2 authors.
Help ID of following herb in wild, 2-3ft ht, leaves with mild aromatic smell, photographed on 05Sep13 at Dhavlas.

This is Spermacoce pusilla. My photographs of this are available at this link

SGNP, Aug 2014 :: Requesting ID of this plant :: ARKSEP-07 : 3 posts by 2 authors. Attachments (2).
Requesting to please ID this plant captured at Kanheri Caves, SGNP in Aug 2014.
There was a suggestion on the Indian flora facebook group that this is Richardia scabra… Kindly validate.

Spermacoce pusilla

Talegaon Dabhade Pune
August 2015
Requesting to Id this wild plant with tiny white flowers. is it Spermacoce pusilla?

Affirmative. Now called Borreira pusilla. Please check this link
Thank you for validating, also thank you for the link of very nice pics posted by you.

Talegaon Dabhade Pune
Sep 2015
Requesting to Id this wild herb. is it Spermacoce species?

Spermacoce species in eFloraofindia (with details/ keys from published papers/ regional floras/ FRLHT/ FOI/ Biotik/ efloras/ books etc., where ever available on net)

Spermacoce species as suggested by …  But unable to pinpoint the species.

From the lanceolate – leaves it seems to be S. pusilla



SK191NOV10-2016:ID : 11 posts by 3 authors. Attachments (6)
Location: Pilot Baba Ashram, Bhaktapur , Nepal
Altitude:  5500 ft.
Date: 26 September 2016

Attachments (1)

Pl. check Rubiaceae – Spermacoce species ?

It looks like Spermacoce pusilla except for the calyx color, which is usually green.

I guess matching with Spermacoce pusilla Wall. (accepted name). Borreria pusilla (Wall.) DC. (synonym)

Some confusion still remains regarding correct ID as image
looks little different in the FoI.

Pl. check my images at Operation Spermacoce- Spermacoce pusilla?

I guess first 4 sets of images are matching and hope my images are too S. pusilla.
But leaves of remaining images and of FoI looks little different.
Request for opinion please.

ID KANNUR 47 : 4 posts by 3 authors. Attachments (1)- 5 MB.
Please identify this herb from a hillock of Kannur District of Kerala. collected in September.

Pl. check comparative images at /species/a—l/l/lamiaceae/leucas

It is Spermacoce pusilla Wall.,

ID Requested : 7 posts by 3 authors. Attachments (1)- 1 MB.
I request the ID of the plant attached:
Location: Shervaroyan Hills, Salem Dist., Tamil Nadu.
Alt.: ca. 1000 m asl.
Habit: Erect herb.

Some Spermacoce species.

Pl. check with species in efi at
Species pages have images.

It is Spermacoce pusilla of Rubiaceae

It resembles Spermacoce pusilla Wall.


Plant for ID 26 – indiantreepix | Google Groups : 1 image.
This plant was also photographed on road side between Hoshangabad and bhopal.
May I request for ID please.

Looks like Spermacoce pusilla (Tarakadal). See details from Indiantreepix Database.

I have some doubts still about the ID


Request For ID 060909 VR – indiantreepix | Google Groups : 3 images.
small herb for Id, flower size 2-3 mm.
photo taken on  06/09/09 at amravati Maharashtra.

I think this is Spermacoce pusilla (Rubiaceae family).

Yes it is Spermacoce pusilla.
Earlier links on Indiantreepix.

Pusilla, pusillum, pusillus in Latin means  tiny/very small (L.) [poo-SIL-l’]
This may be the reason for the name of the species.

A very common herb with white tiny flowers seen all over on Vetal Tekdi Pune.

This should be Diamond Flower (Oldenlandia corymbosa)- FOI

On carefully studying various answers the plant appears to be Spermacoce pusilla
Tiny false button weed or Tarakadal in Marathi
Family: Rubiaceae

…, you are right. It is Spermacoce pusilla indeed! FOI


ID(ID-DKB164) – indiantreepix | Google Groups : 1 image.
Plant from smriti van Jaipur.
For  ID(ID-DKB164)
Photo Taken on-8.6.2009

Looks like Leucas aspera

It is different.

Its Spermacocae

I think it’s Spermacoce ocymoides as per Indiantreepix Database:

Now I feel that species in this thread has to be Spermacoce pusilla & not Spermacoce ocymoides:. FOI link for Spermacoce pusilla is below:
Thanks a lot … for raising the doubts.


Spermacoce pusilla from Rubiaceae. MAKA in Marathi माका I don’t know yet any plant called as Maka, Marathi माका, other than Eclipta alba

… me too am skeptical about the name maka … any reference possible … ? OR somebody may please validate.
Could compile following names … tiny false buttonweed • Hindi: सफेद फूली safed phooli • Marathi: तारकादळ OR तारकादल tarakadal • Telugu: చుక్కకాడ tsukka-kada.

Sorry I was under the wrong impression that it is Maka. In fact Eclipta belonging to family Asteraceae is the true Maka which was in my mind. Anyway this herb does look like Spermacoce pusilla isn’t it?

… to me it looks rather Spermacoce ocymoides.

I agree with … id: Spermacoce pusilla, owing to its narrow oblong leaves. S. ocymoides will have broad ovate-elliptic leaves and more number of flowers per inflorescence.

Operation Spermacoce- Spermacoce pusilla?:  Attachments (4). 7 posts by 5 authors.
There has been a lot of confusion regarding Spermacoce in past few days, without any concrete result so far.
In view feel that everybody has a re-look at Spermacoce species & post them one by one to sort out the confusion.
I am posting one here myself.
My photos seems to differ a bit (also there is lot of similarities) from … photos at FOI & Flickr as per links below:
I have an apprehension that these (… pictures) may have been taken at different time or place & may be of different species.
I also have the feeling that in Shrikant ji’s book relationship between Spermacoce pusilla & Spermacoce ocymoides has not been properly explained.
Is there any relation with Spermacoce prostrata, as per pictures at link:
Nature loves you
& desc. at link: HEAR

Among my photos of S. pusilla at Flickr
one of them at http://www.flickr.com/photos/dinesh_valke/2855532251/ looks different from S. pusilla and has caused the confusion.
It could be S. ocymoides … letting the description stay as it is for today as S. pusilla — tomorrow will change it to S. ocymoides.

This is my picture of Spermacoce pusilla. Posted earlier on the group.

Id from pictures is likely to lead to such confusions and that is part of the exercise. Specimens would sort out this, yet please see if this key helps.
S. ocymoides has narrowly winged stem, elliptic leaves, hairy corolla tube and inserted stamens.
S. pusilla has 4 angled stem, linear leaves, glabrous corolla tube and exserted stamens.
Another S. articularis also occurs in Maharashtra but its key is not based on visible field characters.
Hope I am not adding to the confusion

My pics of Spermacoce pusilla taken at Kas plateau, Near Satara, Maharashtra in Sept 2009.

Common name: Tiny False Buttonweed
Hindi : सफेद फूली
Marathi : तारकादळ
Family: Rubiaceae
2 images.

Details of two pictures of … at FOI are as:

“They were at different places:
1) Vaghbil, Thane — home vicinity, and
2) Nirlon Knowledge Park, Goregaon — office premises.”
Now, I am still having a strong doubt about 2nd picture of … at FOI being some different species. May I request members to post pictures of Spermacoce pusilla showing full view of the plant.

The genera Spermacoce and Borreria are real nightmare for the taxonomists over ages.
The plants in question should be collected from the field and may send to one of the experts in our group. This is my suggestion to solve the mystery. 

Borreira pusilla: Photographed on my property at Shahapur. This was identified by Dr. Almeida.

very nice pics, esp close up of bluish white teeny tiny flowers… is it medicinal ? cant remember?

Dr.S.M.Almeida & Dr.M.R.Almeida’s new publication ‘Handbook of Diseases and their Herbal Remedies in Maharashtra’ in 2 volumes lists the medicinal uses of B.auricularia, B.hispida & B.verticillata but unfortunately makes no mention of B.pusilla.

Knoxia spp for id from Pipalkoti
Small herb shot from near roadside are pipalkoti

to me it looks more like Spermacoce pusilla. pl. check.
Wikimedia Commons image
A picture at Flowers of India also looks like the ones posted here.

Thanks for correct id


Rubiaceae Week : Spermacoce pusilla Pune:  Spermacoce pusilla
A small common herb seen everywhere (Pune).


sperm-a-KOH-see — seed point, referring to the capsule being surrounded by calyx points
pus-ILL-uh — insignificant (or weak)
Jul 25, 2010 … at Vaghbil, Thane, Maharashtra
commonly known as: tiny false buttonweed • Hindi: सफेद फूली safed phooli • Marathi: तारकादळ tarakadal • Telugu: చుక్కకాడ tsukka-kada
Native to: tropical Africa, India, Sri Lanka
References: Flowers of IndiaFurther Flowers of Sahyadri by Shrikant Ingalhalikar
more views: Jul 25, 2010 … at Vaghbil, Thane, Maharashtra 
Jul 21, 2008 … at Goregaon, Mumbai

Rubiaceae Week: Knoxia sp from Morni Hills: 6 images.

Knoxia sp from Morni Hills
Can this small wild herb be Knoxia sumatrensis
pls validate

Efi site link for this species: /species/m—z/r/rubiaceae/knoxia/knoxia-sumatrensis

It doesn’t look like Knoxia to me.
It may be Spermacoce verticillata.

May I request you to pl. validate it as per your thread.

Thanks … But neither of the posts seem to be Spermacoce verticillata.

I think it should be Spermacoce pusilla Wall. as per comparative images at Spermacoce and as per keys at Flora of China


Spermacoce pusilla Wall. : 2 posts by 1 author. Attachments (4)- around 1 mb each.
Location: Bindhabasini Indra Daha, Kathmandu
Altitude: 1732 m.
Date: 18 August 2019
Habit : Wild

Attachments (4)- 1 mb or more.


ID requested: Rubiaceae: 3 images.|
Dry forests near Masinagudi, Mudumalai Tiger Reserve, Nilgiris, TN|
Altitude: 900 m.

Spermacoce pusilla


Wild Plant for ID : Borgad Conservation Reserve : Nasik : 19SEP21 : AK – 022: 3 images.
Wild plants seen at the base of Borgad yesterday (18.9.21)

Spermacoce pusilla Wall. !



Spermacoce pusilla Wall.: 5 very high res. images.
Location: Dailekh, West Nepal
Altitude: 1200 m.
Date: 13 August 2021
Habit : Wild



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *