Mikania parviflora

Mikania parviflora

Mikania parviflora (Mikania parviflora (Aubl.) H. Karst.) Is a shrub species in the form of a vine belonging to the Asteraceae family.

Systematics –
From a systematic point of view it belongs to:
Eukaryota Domain,
Kingdom Plantae,
Magnoliophyta Division,
Magnoliopsida class,
Subclass Asteridae,
Asterales Order,
Asteraceae family,
Subfamily Asteroideae,
Eupatorieae tribe,
Mikaniinae sub-tribe,
Genus Mikania,
Species M. parvi flora.
The terms are synonymous:
– Karelia saturiaefolia Cav.
– Eupatorium amarum Vahl;
– Eupatorium micranthon J.F.Gmel .;
– Eupatorium parviflorum Aubl. (basionimo);
– Eupatorium vincaefolium Lam.
– Eupatorium vincifolium Lam .;
– Mikania amara (Vahl) Willd .;
– Mikania amara var. amara (Vahl) Willd.
– Mikania brooksii W.C. Holmes & McDaniel;
– Mikania cornifolia G.Don ex Baker;
– Mikania divaricata Poepp. & Endl .;
– Mikania loretensis B.L.Rob .;
– Mikania saturiaefolia Cav.
– Mikania signed Sch.Bip. ex Miq .;
– Willoughbya divaricata Kuntze;
– Willoughbya parviflora (Aubl.) Kuntze;
– Willoughbya entered into Kuntze.

Etymology –
The term Mikania of the genus was dedicated in honor of the Bohemian botanist Johann Christian Mikan (1769-1844).
The specific epithet parviflora comes from small párvus and flos floris fiore: with small or few flowers.

Geographic Distribution and Habitat –
Mikania parviflora is a plant native to the areas of the Magdalena Valley in Colombia and present in the Amazon, Andes, Panama.
Its habitat is that of the temperate-humid and tropical areas of the Amazon basin at altitudes between 0 and 900 m. s.l.m ..

Description –
Mikania parviflora is a woody species similar to the vine with a height that can reach 15 meters in height.
The leaves are opposite or spirally arranged; they have a short petiole and the lamina has an ovate outline with a tightly corded base; the consistency is leathery; the margins are wavy.
The inflorescences are composed of terminal flower heads both on the main and lateral cauli. The flower heads are formed by a cylindrical sub-casing made up of 4 sub-equal and persistent scales (or bracts) in whose interior a receptacle forms the basis for all tubular flowers. The scales are arranged in two series (the two copies are arranged in an overlapping manner). The receptacle is flat and has no steel wool. Casing diameter: 1 to 4 mm.
The flowers are tetra-cyclic (with four whorls: calyx – corolla – androecium – gynoecium) and pentamers (each whorl is composed of five elements). They are also actinomorphs and hermaphrodites. There are 4 flowers per head.
The fruits are achenes with pappus. The shape of the achenium is prismatic. The carpophore has a short-cylindrical shape. The pappus is composed of numerous (from 30 to 60) bearded, persistent, capillary-shaped bristles with obtuse or acute apical cells and arranged on 1 – 2 series.

Cultivation –
Mikania parviflora is a plant that grows mostly in the spontaneous state and that prefers subtropical areas with humid climate and organic soils.
It is collected for various uses, especially medicinal and used in herbal preparations.
The plant can be propagated by seed or by layering.

Customs and Traditions –
Mikania parviflora is a common plant in subtropical flora where it has been used since ancient times by local populations especially in traditional medicine.
A tea is obtained from the plant which is used as a treatment for stomach pains and to clean the uterus (dilation and curettage).
It is boiled with other plants to produce a tonic that can reduce malarial fever.
The leaves have antidote, cholagogue, diuretic and febrifuge properties; they are boiled and the water drunk as an anti-menorrhagic.

Preparation Method –
The whole plant is used from Mikania parviflora, including the root.
A decoction of the stem and leaves is used as a remedy for children’s enemas and to treat malaria and eczema.
The stems are squeezed, mixed with ginger rhizomes (Zingiber officinale) and eaten with green vegetables as a remedy for colds, headaches and stomach pains.
The macerated leaves are vigorously rubbed into the skin as a treatment for rashes.
An infusion is used as a remedy for snakebite and syphilis.
The juice from the leaves is applied topically to treat external ulcers and itching.
The leaves in liquid mixture are used to treat anal thrush in babies, and are placed in the hot water bath for women after giving birth for pregnancy.
A decoction is used for a febrifugal bath.

Guido Bissanti

– Acta Plantarum – Flora of the Italian Regions.
– Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.
– Useful Tropical Plants Database.
– Conti F., Abbate G., Alessandrini A., Blasi C. (ed.), 2005. An annotated checklist of the Italian vascular flora, Palombi Editore.
– Pignatti S., 1982. Flora of Italy, Edagricole, Bologna.
– Treben M., 2000. Health from the Lord’s Pharmacy, Advice and experiences with medicinal herbs, Ennsthaler Editore.

Warning: Pharmaceutical applications and alimurgical uses are indicated for informational purposes only, they do not represent in any way a medical prescription; therefore no responsibility is taken for their use for curative, aesthetic or food purposes.

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