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Sauropus androgynus (L.) Merrill (Euphorbiaceae)
Vernacular name: phakwan baan
Common name: amameshiba (Japanese)

  An erect, glabrous, perennial, monoecious shrub which can reach a height of 3.5 m. Leaves biseriate, alternate, oblong to orbicular, 2-7.5 by 1-3 cm, entire, glaucous beneath, dark green above. Inflorescence a dense axillary fascicle. Flowers unisexual, without corolla, but with more or less intensely red-coloured persistent calyx; calyx of the male flower disciform, 6-10 mm in diameter; stamen 3, connate; calyx of the female flower 6-cleft more than halfway down, lobes 6-8 mm broad; stigma 3-branched, red, each branch bilobed. Fruit a globose to faintly 6-angular capsule, about 1.5 cm in diameter, white, dehiscing with 3 valves. Seeds angular, black.
  It grows widely in evergreen forest, clearings, scrub, rocky or waste ground and roadsides, cultivated from sea-level up to 1,300 m.
  Young shoots are eaten raw or cooked (boiled or fried) in many dishes. In 100 g edible portion contains water 79.8 g, protein 7.6 g, fat 1.8 g, carbohydrates 6.9 g, Ca 234 mg, P 64 mg, Fe 3.1 mg, vitamin A 10,000 IU, vitamin B1 0.23 mg, vitamin B2 0.15 mg, vitamin C 136 mg, ash 2.0 g and fiber 1.9 g. A decoction of the root is used against fever and urinary problems. Leaves are used stimulate milk production and recovery of the womb.
  It is propagated by stem cutting, in commercial plantings the distance is 30-40 x 30-40 cm, regular plucking is needed to stimulate the growth of new shoots.
  Caution: Respiration trouble after having this plant was reported in Japan and Taiwan.


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