Laportea aestuans

(Linnaeus) Chew

Gard. Bull. Straits Settlem. 21: 200. 1965.

Basionym: Urtica aestuans Linnaeus Sp. Pl. ed. 2, 2: 1397. 1763
Treatment appears in FNA Volume 3.

Herbs, annual, 1-10 dm, sparsely to densely pubescent with stinging hairs and stipitate-glandular, nonstinging hairs. Leaf blades broadly ovate to nearly orbiculate, 9-20 × 6-16 cm, base rounded or abruptly attenuate, auriculate, margins regularly serrate or dentate, apex short-acuminate. Inflorescences with both staminate and pistillate flowers in same panicle, or proximal panicles with staminate flowers. Staminate flowers ca. 2 mm across; tepals 4-5, equal in length; stamens 4-5, opposite tepals; filaments longer than tepals. Pistillate flowers ca. 0.7 mm; tepals 2-4, appressed, inner pair ca. 1/2 length of ovary; ovary ovoid to ellipsoid; style persistent, hooked and beaklike, ca. 0.2 mm, becoming knoblike in fruit. Achenes strongly compressed, ± orbicular, ca. 0.9 × 1.3 mm.

Phenology: Flowering fall–winter.
Habitat: Waste places, cultivated ground
Elevation: 0-10 m


V3 180-distribution-map.gif

Possibly introduced; Fla., Mexico, West Indies, Central America (Costa Rica and Panama).


Plants of Laportea aestuans in the flora have slightly auriculate leaf bases; those from outside the flora area frequently have rounded or truncate leaf bases.

Selected References


Lower Taxa