Alternanthera sessilis (L.) R.Br. ex DC - AMARANTHACEAE - Dicotyledon

Basionym : Gomphrena sessilis L.

Synonym : Amaranthus viridis L.

Common name : sessile joyweed.

Habit - © Juliana PROSPERI - CIRAD 2005 - 2006 Prostrate habit - © Pierre GRARD - CIRAD 2005 - 2006 Opposite leaves - © Pierre GRARD - CIRAD 2005 - 2006 Flowers grouped together in sessile glomerules - © Pierre GRARD - CIRAD 2005 - 2006 Elliptic leaves - © Pierre GRARD - CIRAD 2005 - 2006 White inflorescences - © Pierre GRARD - CIRAD 2005 - 2006

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Botany Biology Phenology Ecology Distribution Agricultural importance Cultural control Chemical control

Botany :

Description : Terrestrial, annual or perennial, prostrate herb, up to 1 m long, rooting at nodes. Taproot white or brown. Stem rounded, solid, hairy. Stipules absent. Leaves simple, not divided or lobed, opposite, stalked or sessile, elliptic, margin entire, apex acute, base acute, pinnately veined. Flowers bisexual, grouped together in few-flowered glomerules, sessile, white. Fruit nut-like.

Biology :

Reproduced by seeds and vegetative. Many branched and stolons from the node creep on the ground; fruits are dispersed myrmecochorously.

Phenology :

Flowering May to December: fruiting June to January.

Ecology :

Preferably wet soil, along ditches, fallow lands. The plant grows in wet soil in lakes, marshes, irrigation canals and rice field levees and in waterways, up to 1,250 m altitude.

Distribution :

Pantropical.

Agricultural importance :

Sometimes noxious.

Cultural control :

Cultivation favours A. sessilis emergence, and is a useful means of killing seedlings before sowing rice.

Chemical control :

Amitrole is very effective. Reasonably effective are 2,4-D for broadleaved weeds (1-1.5kg a.i./ha in 200 liters of water) and MCPA (0.5-1 kg a.i./ha in 200 liters of water ), but repeated applications are necessary.

Uses :
A. gracilis is used as vegetable. Pig's food.

References :
- Lavit Kham, 2004. Medicinal plants of Cambodia.
- Soerjani M., Kostermans A. J. G. H., Tjitrosoepomo G. 1987. Weeds of rice in Indonesia. Balai Pustaka. Jakarta.
- Tavatchai Radanachaless, J.F.Maxwell. 1994. Weeds of soybean fields in Thailand. Multiple Cropping, Center Publications. Thailand.

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