Pogostemon auricularius (L.) Hassk

Last updated: 3 August 2015

Scientific Name

Pogostemon auricularius (L.) Hassk


Dysophylla auricularia (L.) Blume, Eusteralis auricularia (L.) M.R.Almeida, Mentha auricularia L., Mentha foetida Burm.f. [1]

Vernacular Name

Malaysia Kekucing [2], ekor Kuching [3], awi tanah [4]
English Tiger steam [3]
China Shui zhen zhu cai [3]
Indonesia Ke kucing (Aceh); ketumpang (Javanese); kambing kambing (Kalimantan) [2], panyap leniau [3], buntut uching (Sundanese) [4]
Thailand Saapraeng saap-kaa (Peninsular) [2]
Philippines Buntot pusa (Tagalog) [2]
Vietnam T[us] h[ut]ng h[it]nh tai, c[or] c[ot] [2]
Bangladesh Krombe [3].

Geographical Distributions

Pogostemon auricularius is distributed from India throughout Southeast Asia and Southern China but is not recorded from the Lesser Sunda Islands or Australia. [2]

P. auricularius grows on sunny, constantly or periodically humid localities, borders of ditches, dams and upland rice fields, grassy wasteland and thickets. It is locally often common, from the lowland to 2000 m altitude. [2]

Botanical Description

P. auricularius is comes from the family Labiatae. It is an erect or procumbent, strong smelling annual herb and can reach 30-80 cm tall. The stem is simple or laxly branched, weak and bluntly 4-angular, with pinkish spreading hairs. [2]

The leaves are decussate, elliptical to ovate, 4-6 cm x 2-3 cm, its base is wedge-shaped while the apex is acute. The leaf margin is irregularly serrate, except near the base. The blade is membranaceous, hairy and glandular on both surfaces supported with 2-10 mm long, hairy stalk. There are no stipules. [2]

The inflorescence is crowded in a whorl, forming a dense terminal spike, 4-8 cm long. The long ciliated bracts are narrowly elliptical. The 5-toothed sepal is nearly bell-shaped, gland dotted outside, 1.2-1.5 mm long. The teeth are nearly equal, triangular and ciliate. Sepal in the fruit is urn shaped, 2.5-3.5 mm long and the teeth often incurved over the little nut. The lavender, pale pink or white petal is 2-3.5 mm long, slender tube, exserted with 4 lobes that are equal, obtuse and hairy. The 4 lilac coloured stamens are nearly equal with 3.5-4 mm long filaments, slender, upper half villous, The style is 5 mm long, bifid with 0.3 mm long disk. [2]

The fruit consisting of 4 dry 1-seeded little nuts in the form of schizocarp enclosed in the persistent sepal. The little nuts are ellipsoid size 0.6 mm x 0.4 mm, finely reticulate which is brown. [2]

The seedling is epigeal germination, has 2 mm long hypocotyls and glandular. The cotyledons are triangular, 2 mm long and obtuse apex. The epicotyls are hairy and greenish to purplish. The first two leaves which are 3.5 mm long are egg-shaped while the margin are crenate, nerves prominent, hairy and glandular underneath. [2]


No documentation

Chemical Constituent

No documentation

Plant Part Used

No documentation

Traditional Use

No documentation

Preclinical Data

No documentation

Clinical Data

No documentation


No documentation

Poisonous Management

No documentation

Line drawing


Figure 1: The line drawing of P. auricularius [2]


  1. The Plant List. Ver 1.1. Pogostemon auricularius (L.) Hassk. [homepage on the Internet]. c2013 [updated 2012 Mar 23; cited 2015 Jul 30]. Available from: http://www.theplantlist.org/tpl1.1/record/kew-162085
  2. Retnowati E. Pogostemon auricularius (L.) Hassk. In: van Valkenburg JLCH, Bunyapraphatsara N, editors. Plant Resources of South-East Asia No. 12(2): Medicinal and poisonous plants 2. Leiden, Netherlands: Backhuys Publisher, 2001; p. 443-445.
  3. Quattrocchi U. CRC world dictionary of medicinal and poisonous plant: Common names, scientific names, eponyms, synonyms and etymology. Volume IV M-Q. Boca Raton, Florida: CRC Press; 2012. p. 654.
  4. Herbal Medicine Research Centre, Institute for Medical Research.Compendium of medicinal plants used in Malaysia. Volume 2. Kuala Lumpur: HMRC IMR; 2002. p. 243.