Alternanthera bettzickiana (Regel) G.Nicholson (Images by Gurcharan Singh, (Aarti Khale -Identified by Gurcharan Singh), (Bhagyashri Ranade – Identified by Gurcharan Singh), (Inserted by Bhagyashri Ranade))

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Alternanthera brasiliana (L.) Kuntze (Images by (Aarti Khale – validation by Gurcharan Singh), Dinesh Valke & Karuna Kanta Das, (Inserted by Bhagyashri Ranade))

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Alternanthera ficoidea (L.) P. Beauv.


(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))

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Alternanthera paronychioides A.St.-Hil. (Images by (Surajit Koley – validation by Gurcharan Singh), (inserted by Bhagyashri Ranade))

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Alternanthera philoxeroides (Mart.) Griseb. (Images by Gurcharan SIngh, Nidhan Singh & (Surajit Koley – Identified by Rajdeo SIngh), (Inserted by Bhagyashri Ranade))

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Alternanthera pungens Kunth (Images by Gurcharan Singh & (Mayur Nandikar – validation by Gurcharan Singh), (Inserted by Bhagyashri Ranade)) 

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Alternanthera sessilis (L.) R.Br. ex DC. (Images by Gurcharan Singh & (Surajit Koley – Validation by Gurcharan Singh), (Inserted by Bhagyashri Ranade)) 

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FLOWERING PLANTS OF INDIA, DICOTYLEDONS, Vol-I (Acanthaceae-Avicenniaceae) authored by S. Karthikeyan, M. Sanjappa and S. Moorthy and published by BSI, Kolkata in 2009 is an important document for names, authority and distribution of Amaranthaceae species in India.

As per this document (Karthikeyan et al., 2009) following species of Alternanthera occur in India:
  1. Alternanthera bettzickiana (Regel) G. Nicholson
  2. A. brasiliana (L.) Kunth
  3. A. caracasana Kunth
  4. A. ficoidea (L.) P. Beauv.
  5. A. maritima (Moq.) Mears [synonym of A. littoralis P. Beauv.]
  6. A. peploides (Willd. ex Roem. & Schult.) Urb [synonym of A. caracasana Kunth]
  7. A. philoxeroides (Mart.) Griseb.
  8. A. polygonoides R. Br. ex Sweet [synonym of A. sessilis (L.) R. Br. ex DC.]
  9. A. pungens Kunth
  10. A. sessilis (L.) R. Br. ex DC.
  11. A. tenella Colla var. tenella [synonym of A. ficoidea (L.) Sm.]
  12. A. tenella Colla var. versicolor [synonym of A. pulchella Kunth]
Scrutiny of these names in The Plant List indicates that some are synonyms.  


 
 

Binomial Habit Notes References Distribution

Alternanthera paronychioides A.St. (Pl. see efi thread) Herb Plains, Dry Localities,  Naturalized, Native of Tropical America Flora of Tamil Nadu, VOL. II, 1987 Coimbatore, Dharmapuri, Nilgiri,  Kancheepuram,  Thiruvallur, Tiruvannamalai, Tiruchchirappalli, Thanjavur
Alternanthera philoxeroides (C. Martiu) Griseb. Herb Aquatic, Naturalized, Native of Tropical America   All districts
Alternanthera pungens Kunth Herb Plains, Dry Localities, Naturalized, Native of Tropical America Flora of Tamil Nadu, VOL. II, 1987 All districts
Alternanthera sessilis (L.) R.Br. ex DC. Herb Plains, Moist Localities Flora of Tamil Nadu, VOL. II, 1987 All districts
Alternanthera tenella Colla. = Alternanthera ficoidea (L.) P. Beauv. Herb Plains, Dry Localities,  Naturalized, Native of Tropical America   All districts
Alternanthera tenella Colla. var. bettzickiana (Regel) Veldkamp is a synonym of Alternanthera bettzickiana (Regel) G.Nicholson Herb Plains to  High Altitude, Cultivated, Native of Tropical America Matthew, 1999 All districts

 
 

Botanical name Synonyms Family Common name

Alternanthera dentata = Alternanthera brasiliana (L.) Kuntze Amaranthaceae Joy Weed
Alternanthera ficoidea Gomphrena ficoidea, Alternanthera tenella Amaranthaceae Sanguinarea
Alternanthera paronychioides (Pl. see efi thread) Amaranthaceae Smooth Chaff Flower
Alternanthera philoxeroides Bucholzia philoxeroides, Achyranthes paludosa, Achyranthes philoxeroides Amaranthaceae Alligator Weed
Alternanthera pungens Amaranthaceae Khaki Weed
Alternanthera sessilis Amaranthaceae Sessile Joyweed

 
 
 

 
 
Mansfeld’s Encyclopedia of Agricultural and Horticultural Crops …, Volume 4 By Peter Hanelt, Institute of Plant Genetics and Crop Plant Research (2001)- Details-

 
 
 
Vegetables edited by G. J. H. Grubben (2004)- Details-
 
Flora of Medak District, Andhra Pradesh, India By T. Pullaiah, Chintala Prabhakar, B. Ravi Prasad Rao (1998)- Details with keys

Alternanthera tenella Colla. = Alternanthera ficoidea (L.) P. Beauv.

 
 
Invasive Alien Plants: An Ecological Appraisal for the Indian Subcontinent By J.R. Bhatt, J.S. Singh, S.P. Singh, R.S. Tripathi and R.K. Kohli (2011)- Details-
 
Flora of Davanagere District, Karnataka, India By B. K. Manjunatha, V. Krishna, T. Pullaiah (2004)- Details-
 
 
 
Plant Wealth of the Lower Ganga Delta: An Eco-taxonomical Approach, Volume 2 By Kumudranjan Naskar  (1993)- Details with keys
 
Gardening in India By George Marshall Woodrow, G Marshall (1999)- Details- p.82-
Alternanthera amabilis Lem. is a synonym of Alternanthera bettzickiana


 
 
 
Trying to keep it as simple as possible (but also fearing technical differences may get blurred) for easy identification:

1. Inflorescence a head on raised stalk

     2. Plants with thick reddish leaves, atleast ¾ as broad as long; cultivated as hedge/border plant ………………………1. A. brasileana (incl. A. dentata)

     2. Leaves not reddish, less than ½ as broad as long; wild plant of moist or aquatic habitats. …………………………….2. A.philoxeroides.

1. Inflorescence a sessile head in leaf axils

         3. Plants prostrate, mat-forming

4. Leaves atleast ¾ as broad as long, stems and leaves rigid; flowers (tepals) spine-tipped ………………….3. A. pungens

4. Leaves usually less than ½ as broad as long, stems and leaves soft; flowers (tepals) not spin-tipped …4. A. paronychoides

3. Plants erect or spreading not mat-forming

    5. Leaves sessile, linear or narrowly oblanceolate; plant of moist or wet situations ……………………….… 5. A. sessilis

    5. Leaves with distinct petiole; mostly cultivated

        6. Leaves green or tinged with purple; mostly oblanceolate, gradually narrowed into petiole, less than ½ as broad as long ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….6. A. bettzickiana (incl. A. amoena and A. versicolor)

        6. Leaves green, not tinged with purple; mostly elliptic-ovate, more than ½ as broad as long, more sharply narrowed into short petiole…………………..…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………7. A. ficoidea        

No decision/information yet on A. pulchella, although it is listed on the net profusely.


 
Alternanthera : 3 posts by 2 authors.

I have updated eFI (efloraofindia) page on Alternanthera

Attempts have been made to incorporate most of the species available in India & nearby areas with details & keys directly or through links as far as possible. It’s quite possible that there may be some discrepancy in the accepted names & synonyms taken from other links.

Species discussed so far in efloraofindia are given at the bottom of the page in the form of links against Subpages. On clicking them one can see all the details.

If someone can provide complete list of Indian species with source references it will be wonderful.

Any comments/ corrections are welcome.


I have added the list of Indian species based on Karthikeyan et al. (2009).


Thanks, … Species at other links seems to match with it.


Pl. go through Alternanthera page with images of species (mainly done by Bhagyashri ji) in efloraofindia.

If you find any mis-identification, pl. let us know. If anybody can send images of other species of this genera (for incorporation in the website), if any, it will be really nice.

Also, if anybody is interested to take up the activity of inserting images on efloraofindia pages from efloraofindia posts, pl. let us know.


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