Justicia trinervia Vahl, Enum. Pl. 1: 156 156 1804. (Syn: Adhatoda trinervia (Vahl) Nees; Dicliptera trinervia (Vahl) Juss.; Nicoteba trinervia (Vahl) Lindau);
Three Nerved Squirrel Tail • Marathi: लहान् अडुलसा Lahan Adulsa, Sut;
J. trinervia and J. betonica are two distinct species: the former is generally a low-lying procumbent herb with narrow leaves, whereas the latter species is a taller, erect herb/subshrub/shrub reaching 2 m high, with ovate-lanceolate leaves. (nevertheless, the bracts are similar-looking: scarious with green nerves in both the species);

Images by J.M.Garg (Validated by Shrikant Ingalhalikar & Vijayasankar Raman) (Inserted by J.M.Garg)



Justicia trinervia? – indiantreepix | Google Groups : 8 posts by 3 authors. Attachments (3)

On 17/8/08 in Talakona forest, AP. Here is a link for its drawing & synonyms:

It could be Justicia adhatoda locally called Adulsa

Thanks, …, for the feedback.

It (Justicia adhatoda) is stated to be a 1-3 m high, branched shrub. But my posted plant is a low prostrate herb with small leaves compared to 10-20 cm size leaves for Justicia adhatoda. Here is a Wikipedia link for Justicia adhatoda: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Justicia_adhatoda

Yes, it looks to be J. trinervia but the season does not tally. I am not aware if this plant occurs in AP.

For me also this looks like Justicia trinervia, owing to the narrow leaves and linear spikes.
In J. nilgherrensis, a high altitude species with stout rootstock, the bracts larger (0.5 inch or more long) whereas in this sp it is just half of it.

Pl. also refer key provided by Gamble (Fl. Madras 2: 1075) for more clarity.


I am attaching the photos for the confirmation of ID.
Justicia nilgherrensis (Acanthaceae)
Habit: A procumbent herb with a woody stem and rootstock.
Place: Shervaroyan Hills, Salem Dist., Tamil Nadu.
DoP: 18-04-2014.

Another confusingly similar species is Justicia trinervia
Pl. check its differences from Justicia nilgherrensis
To me most likely your id is correct.

yes, it is Justicia trinerva only


Justicia trinervia Vahl

on Kas plateau on September 28, 2008

I think it should be Justicia betonica as per keys at efi thread & details at Justicia betonica and Justicia trinervia

…, to me, definitely not Justicia betonica. The bracts of J. betonica are tell-tale.  J. trinervia may be validated for its correctness.

It’s not J. trinervia as per the following: Justicia trinervia? – indiantreepix | Google Groups

As per these links, images of J. trinervia  in FOI are not correct. … may pl. check.

Thanks … for this validation; the posted plant remains inconclusive for the third time; earlier two posts were 02 FEB 09 and 10 OCT 12.

I read through all posts of our group, related to J. trinervia — it looks like J. betonica gets discussed almost in all of them. Perhaps because
1) the bracts are white with green nerves
2) at The Plants List, J. trinervia is treated as synonym of J. betonica, though not with full confidence.

But I think they are separate species. J. betonica is relatively, quite a tall plant, and not sure if it roots at nodes (as described for J. trinervia).

I do not think it is Justicia betonica.
Many thanks …  for having similar thoughts as mine.

We will wait for comments.

But I think it looks different from images at Justicia trinervia as well as FoPI

I doubt this species has distribution in your area.

Justicia trinerivia Vahl is illustrated in Shrikant ji’s first book – Flowers of Sahyadri. And the posted plant / flower looks quite like it.

Than it should be OK.


Kas Week :: DV :: 28 SEP 08 – 1211 :: ¿ Justicia trinervia ?: Kas plateau … about 4000 ft asl
… one of the 39 World Heritage sites in the Western Ghats of India

Date/Time: September 28, 2008 at 12.11pm
Habit: herb, about 30 cm tall
Habitat: lateritic plateau among other small herbs and grass

Right id as per discussion in another thread at Acanthaceae Fortnight :: Justicia trinervia :: Kas plateau :: DVMAR70/81



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