commelina erecta

medicinal plant santa lucia

Today we are going to talk about a type of secondary vegetation plant that has medicinal properties. It's about the commelina erecta. It is also known by the name of flor de Santa Lucía and it is a perennial plant that has a vertical or lying growth. It has a wide area of ​​distribution and characteristics that make it unique.

Therefore, we are going to dedicate this article to tell you all the characteristics, distribution and properties of the Commelina erect.

Key features

santa lucia

This is a perennial herb that is capable of rooting from stem nodes. This means that its stems can grow upright or lying down. This is how various parts of its stems They grow horizontally along the ground and roots emerge from the nodes. This is the way it has to spread throughout the territory. More or less it is usually a common plant in the secondary vegetation of many ecosystems, especially in the humid tropics.

It is an herb native to the southern United States and is found throughout the area as far as Argentina. It has also been registered in Baja California Sur, Chiapas, Durango, Hidalgo, Morelos, Veracruz, Tabasco, Sinaloa, among others. These places you can find the Commelina erect.

Another of its characteristics is that the stems can measure up to 90 centimeters or more. They are highly branched stems from almost their base. Sometimes we can find hairs on the stems to protect themselves from adverse weather conditions. The leaves of this plant They are of the alternating type and can be up to 15 centimeters long and up to 3 centimeters wide.. It is of the narrow type and has some narrow leaves lying or bands and somewhat pointed at the end. When they become the part of the base, more rounded leaves are formed and develop a pair of small lobes on the sides. When the plant develops the leaves become tubular and form a sheath that surrounds the stem.

What stands out most about this is that a small white hairs grow on the pod and gives it a more ornamental appearance.

Description of the commelina erecta

flower of the commelina erecta

This type of plant can be easily recognized as it has the combination of two blue petals with a white petal. The blue petals can be lilac or white depending on some characteristics. The envelope of the flowers has a partially fused edge and is located at the tips of the stems. Sometimes some are found in the axils of the upper leaves. The wrapping of the flowers is known in this plant as a quesadilla.

This quesadilla consists of several flowers circled by a folded bract to form longitudinally on itself. This is where the name quesadilla comes from. It has almost straight and fused posterior edges and can be up to 2 centimeters long with a pointed appearance. Sometimes it can be covered with hairs and have small transverse veins between the parallel and main veins.

Generally only one flower out of 3 will appear open and sticking out. The others are button-shaped and hidden within a bract. As for the fruit, it is a capsule with a globose shape that acquires a wider shape as it approaches the apex. It can be up to 4 millimeters long and has a somewhat more reticulated surface. Inside, it has 2-3 grayish-brown to black seeds. Sometimes these seeds is slightly flattened and can be found both smooth and hairy.

The flowering of the commelina erecta it takes place in summer and the flowers close after noon. It is one of the most curious plants that exist in this regard. It has several uses ranging from ornamental and medicinal. Let's see what its different uses are.

Uses of commelina erecta

commelina erecta

This plant is found in numerous places that are considered to be its habitats. It is common to see in annual crops and perennial crops, on the side of roads, in parks and gardens, little tilled land, some areas of wire, fences and sides of railroad tracks, some shady places as long as they have a good moisture content and are fertile. Therefore, this plant is not very difficult to find and has been used for its medicinal properties for a long time.

What is used from this plant is everything completely or, although particularly the mucilage of its flowers. Despite its medicinal uses, it does not appear in the Argentine National Pharmacopoeia. Among its chemical components that give them medicinal properties we find anthocyanins, alkaloids, saponins, tannins, coumarins, etc.

It has been used for a long time for traditional medicine since the juice of its flowers and leaves can be applied to irritated eyes. Since it can heal damaged eyes they wear vulgar man of the Holy Protector of the blind and is Saint Lucia.

Cultivation and care

Although this plant is mainly used in folk medicine from the collection of wild specimens, it can also be cultivated and taken care of our home. Although we can have a garden with plants with medicinal properties, the commelina erecta it will fit very well. They are easily reproducible plants is from seeds. You can too use the rhizomes or make some highlights in which they will root quite easily.

Although this plant adapts well to drier and sandy places and regions, the optimal development will be in fresh, fertile soils with a good moisture content. It needs some maintenance tasks such as enough watering to keep the humidity in the substrate. It does not support too high temperatures either, but it has a great capacity for adaptation. In some areas of Argentina you can find these plants on the edges of gardens and in pots as ornamental use.

I hope that with this information you can learn more about the commelina erecta and their characteristics.


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  1.   Jessica said

    In an article that I read, I said that if I used this plant together with Muicle (Justicia spicigera) in the form of tea it helped cancer of the womb, can you tell me if this is true? Or how recommendable is it?

    1.    Monica Sanchez said

      Hi Jessica.
      I recommend you consult with a specialist in medicinal plants, since surely he will be able to answer your question.
      Greetings.