Articles

Crotalaria pallida Aiton

Crotalaria pallida Aiton

Family

Leguminosae

Synonyms

Crotalaria mucronata Desv., Crotalaria striata DC., Crotalaria siamica Williams.

Vernacular Names

Malay­sia       

Giring-giring, rang-rang.

English         

Smooth rattlebox, salts rat­tlebox.

Indonesia     

Kekecrekan (Sundanese), orok-orok (Javanese), telpok (Madurese).

Philippines

Gorung­gorung, kolong-kolong, tambarisa.

Cambodia     

Châangrô:ng sva:, dâang höt khmaôch, sandaèk kû.:öy.

Laos              

Hingx ha:y.

Thailand       

Hinghai, hong­hai.

Vietnam        

l[uj]c l[aj]c ba l[as] tr[of]n, c[aa]y mu[oox]ng tr[af], c[af] ph[ee] r[uw]ng.

Geographical Distributions

Crotalaria palli­da is probably a native of tropical Africa, but its natural distribution is obscured by widespread cultivation and subsequent pantropical natural­isation. In Asia, it is common in India and Sri Lan­ka and throughout Southeast Asia.

Description

Crotalaria palli­da is an erect, well-branched annual or short-lived perennial herb, and measures up to 1.5(-3) m tall. Its stem is stout, covered with fine hairs and with slender longitudinal grooves. The branches are densely appressed hairy.

The leaves are trifoliolate, with slender stipules which measure up to 3 mm long, caducous or absent. The petiole is 2-8.5 cm long. The leaflets are variable, elliptical to obovate, measuring 3-13 cm x 2-5(-7) cm, obtuse, often notched at the extremity, sometimes apiculate, hairless above and thinly appressed hairy beneath.

The inflorescence is a terminal, short raceme stalk, measures 15-40 cm long and 20-30-flow­ered. The bracts are linear, measure up to 5 mm long and caducous. The bracteoles are 1-3 mm long, inserted at the base of the sepal and slender. The pedicel is 4 mm long. The sepal is de­flexed, tubular, measures 6-8 mm long, appressed hairy and with 5 unequal lobes. The petal is about 1.5 cm long, yellow and often reddish-brown veined. The elliptical is standard, and measuring 11 mm x 8 mm. The wings measure 8 mm x 3 mm and oblong-Ianceolate. The keel is shallowly rounded, measuring 11 mm x 4 mm, and with narrow and slightly projecting beak.

The pod is shortly stipitate, subcylindrical, measuring 3-5 cm x 6-8 mm, contains 30-40 seeds, nearly smooth and yellowish when ma­ture. The seed is heart-shaped, measuring 3 mm x 2 mm, shiny, with mottled ochre and dark grey-green or brown.

Ecology / Cultivation

Crotalaria palli­da occurs naturally on river banks, edges of lakes, extending into woodlands, grasslands and waste places from 0-1000 m alti­tude and may be planted to 1800 m. It is light-de­manding and shade strongly retards development. It grows in a wide range of annual rainfall condi­tions, from 850 mm to over 3000 mm and occurs occasionally in rather dry locations. The average annual temperature varies from 16-26°C. Tests in Florida showed satisfactory growth in a wide range of soils, except on peat soils developed under coarse grass. In West Africa, it is considered wellsuited to sandy soils.

In Thailand, it is found in the tidal zone, growing in association with Avi­cennia sphaerocarpa Stapf ex Ridley and Ipomoea pes-caprae (L.) R. Br. It also occurs in open, se­condary thickets with Bambusa bambos (L.) Voss, Chromolaena odorata (L.) R.M. King & Robinson and Lantana camara L.

Line Drawing / Photograph

Crotalaria_pallida

References

  1. Plant Resources of South-East Asia No.11: Auxiliary plants.