tef-ROH-see-uh — ash coloured, referring to grey down on leaves
tink-TOR-ee-uh — indicates a plant used in dyeing or has a sap which can stain
commonly known as: orange tephrosia, orange hoary pea • Marathi: केशरी उन्हाली keshari unhali
Native to: India, Sri Lanka
Asia : India (N) ; Andhra Pradesh ; Bihar ; Goa; Gujarat ; Karnataka ; Kerala; Madhaya Pradesh ; Maharashtra ; Orissa ; Tamil Nadu; Sri Lanka (N)  ; Australasia: Australia (I); Indian Ocean: Madagascar (U); Mauritius (I); Reunion (I) as per ILDIS;

Fabaceae-Faboideae (Papilionaceae) Week : Shrubs/Herbs : Tephrosia tinctoria: Tephrosia tinctoria
Marathi : ‘Keshri unhali’ ‘Guli’ ‘Nil’
Near Mahabaleshwar October 2011 Along hill slopes.
Undershrub about a meter high.
Leaves imparipinnate. Leaflets 7-13 mucronate silky.
Flowers scarlet 2-8 in racemes. Pods flat oblong hairyn 8-12b seeded.


ANOCT40 Tephrosia tinctoria : 1 post by 1 author. Attachments (10).

Nandi Hills
1st October 2014


Tephrosia tinctoria Pers.
at Sangameshwar on December 20, 2008


ID-TSP-20NOV2015-1-29:Fabaceae specimen for ID assistance. : 3 posts by 2 authors. Attachments (7)

Kindly identify the specimen belonging to Fabaceae 

Habit: Herb 

Habitat: Wild, dry deciduous forest fringe 

Sighting: Chikmagalur, Karnataka, about 1000 msl 

Date: 24-10-2014

Tephrosia tinctoria Persoon, although the fruits in the last photo look different.

Thanks … for the ID…..The image of the fruits belong to the same specimen.

The fruit pod (33) suggests Cajanus sp.


Fabaceae-Faboideae (Papilionaceae) Week_Flora of Bannerghatta_111111GK05_Tephrosia tinctoria:
Tephrosia tinctoria of Fabaceae family.

Date/Time- 15-10-2011

Location- Place, Altitude, GPS- Bannerghatta, Bangalore Dist Karnataka

Habitat- Garden/ Urban/ Wild/ Type- Moist/Dry Deciduous

Plant Habit- Tree/ Shrub/ Climber/ Herb- Shrub

Height/Length- about 50-150cm

Leaves Type/ Shape/ Size- Compound

Inflorescence Type/ Size- Axillary Racemose

Flowers Size/ Colour/ Calyx/ Bracts- Orange

Fruits Type/ Shape/ Size Seeds-                      

Other Information like Fragrance, Pollinator, Uses etc.- Medicinal

I use to shoot with flash on and then one of my friend told me that you loose the real color (especially shades of red and blue) when flash is used. Then I switch off the flash and tried that it worked. The previous picture (_GIB9763) is a shot when flash is on!
We can see the little difference.

Tephrosia tinctoria has really heavenly coloured flowers….

tef-ROH-see-uh — ash coloured, referring to grey down on leaves
tink-TOR-ee-uh — indicates a plant used in dyeing or has a sap which can stain

Dec 20, 2008 … at Sangameshwar, Maharashtra
commonly known as: orange tephrosia, orange hoary pea • Marathi: केशरी उन्हाली keshari unhali
Native to: India, Sri Lanka
another view:
Dec 20, 2008 … at Sangameshwar, Maharashtra

I love the meanings written in the texts. They are so informative.
A special colour for this plant by mother nature.

Nice photograph, but it look some different species of Tephrosia, not T. tinctoria,, read description in Cooke’s flora, flower pink and leaflets are more in number than in photo.

The flower colour and throat of matches with the following and all other photographs on net

The number of leaflets can varry any thing from 3-13
… it would be more useful if you could indicate species in mind.

sirji, yes i am also trying to find out the species, but it look interesting, you know that its very hard to identify the species when there are similar looking many species in the same genus, almost with same characters, differs in minute characters….
it may be T. tinctoria???, but sirji, how can i ignore the characters mention in the literature over the photos on these two links provided…


AKSEPT01 Desmodium species ? : 4 posts by 4 authors. 4 images.

Nandi Hills, Bangalore
Elevation : 4850 ft
28 September 2014  

Tephrosia sp.

Tephrosia species in eFIoraofindia (with details/ keys from published papers/ regional floras/ FRLHT/ FOI/ efloras/ books etc., where ever available) 

Tephrosia tinctoria Pers.


FABACEAE: Prejith010. Please identify this plant.:
Was on a trek to the Chembra peak in Wynad yesterday and happened to see this plant somewhere between 1100 and 1300 metres asl growing in between the grass in the grasslands. I’m guessing it’s from Family Fabaceae from what I learnt in school.

Tephrosia tinctoria 


198 ID wild plant Desmodium: 16 images.

Please ID wild plant,
Location: near Reserve Forest, Chathamattom, Ernakulam District, (Kochi) Kerala PIN:686671
Altitude: 1400fsl
Flower date: 29.10.2021, 10.15am
Habitat: wild moisture
Plant habit: under shrub, erect, branches, hard stem 08mm base diameter, annual
Height: 06 feet
Leaves: alternate, odd pinnate, leaflets opposite, ovate, size:25×09mm or less
Flower: racemose, clustered, size, diameter:17mm, orange color, non fragrant
Fruit: lengthy beans green into brown, size:10×0.7cm
Seed: brown upto 12 nos., circular compressed, diameter:02.5mm
Camera: mobile Samsung Galaxy A21s

I guess this is not Desmodoium !

Tephrosia tinctoria Persoon

Yes, it is dear …, thank you very much for ID my plant,


397 ID wild plant Tephrosia: 5 high res. images.
Please ID wild plant,
Location: near Santhanpara, Idukki Dist., Kerala
Altitude: 3000fsl
Flower date: 12NOV2022, 02.45pm
Habitat: wild moisture, misty non-shady sloppy grassland hill, wind
Plant habit: small scandent shrub, erect/obliquely, branches, semi hard stem, velvety, perennial
Height: 02 feet
Leaves: alternate, odd pinnate, leaflets (2 paired) opposite elliptic, velvety margins and lower epidermis, simple shiny, size (odd leaf):07×1.4cm
Flower: axillary/terminal spiked racemose, size:01x01x0.8cm, orange, non fragrant
Fruit: beans green into brown, angular compressed, hairy, size:5×0.5cm

Camera: CANON EOS1500D +FL10x

Tephrosia tinctoria (L.) Pers. !

Yes, appears close to images at


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