Spiny Amaranth (Amaranthus spinosus) – complete detail. Medicinal uses of Spiny Amaranth (Amaranthus spinosus). Description of Spiny Amaranth (Amaranthus spinosus) – Kanta chaulai. It has many medicinal properties like astringent, diaphoretic, diuretic, emollient, febrifuge, galactogogue etc.
Classification of Spiny Amaranth. Local name of Amaranthus spinosus is Kanta chaulai and Spiny Amaranth. Amaranthus spinosus is an Annual herb with multi-branched, smooth, herbaceous annual growing to 2 ft. Amaranthus spinosus used in the treatment of internal bleeding, diarrhea, excessive menstruation, snake bites, boils, stomach disorders, ulcerated mouths, vaginal discharges, nosebleeds and wounds.
Amaranthus spinosus is an Annual herb with multi-branched, smooth, herbaceous annual growing to 2 ft. Stems and leaves are smooth and hairless, sometimes shiny in appearance.
Stems angled or with longitudinal lines or ridges, green or brown, leaves alternate, broadly lance late to ovate, discolors, conspicuously veined beneath, up to 7 cm long, 4 cm wide.
Leaves glabrous or with sparse hairs on the main veins below, long petiolate, up to 9 cm. The leaf axils bear pairs of fine and slender spines. Flowers green in axillary clusters and branched terminal spikes. Male flowers in the apical part of the spikes.
Leaf blades are egg-shaped to diamond-shaped, with the broader end closest to the stem, and 1–4 inches long by 0.5–2.5 inches wide. The petiole is approximately as long as the blade. Leaves may be variegated with a v-shaped watermark or area of lighter color. The seeds of spiny amaranth are very small. Seeds mature about one month after flowering. They are scattered around the mother plants or distributed by animals feeding on the plants. It has been observed that large numbers of seedlings emerge from decaying cattle fecal deposits. Seeds are eaten by birds. Seeds may be carried by wind, water, or animal dung.
Common Name – Spiny Amaranth
Local Name – Kanta chaulai
Botanical Name – Amaranthus spinosus
Kingdom – Plantae
Subkingdom – Tracheobionta
Division – Magnoliophyta
Class – Magnoliopsida
Subclass – Caryophyllidae
Order – Caryophyllales
Genus – Amaranthus
Family – Amaranthaceae
Spiny amaranth has spread through tropical and subtropical latitudes around the world. Found in cultivated fields, waste places, roadsides, garbage heaps and abandoned fields. It will grow both in wet or dry sites, but grows best when soil moisture levels are below field capacity.
Amaranthus spinosus leaves and young plants are collected for home consumption as a cooked, steamed or fried vegetable, especially during periods of drought. Amaranthus spinosus plants is used as a tenderizer in cooking tough vegetables such as cowpea leaves and pigeon peas. Leaves are occasionally found for sale on markets. Amaranthus spinosus is also used as forage and said to increase the yield of milk in cattle.
Amaranthus spinosus has many medicinal properties like astringent, diaphoretic, diuretic, emollient, febrifuge, galactogogue etc. Amaranthus spinosus used in the treatment of internal bleeding, diarrhea, excessive menstruation, snake bites, boils, stomach disorders, ulcerated mouths, vaginal discharges, nosebleeds and wounds. A paste of the root is used in the treatment of menorrhagia, gonorrhoea, eczema and colic. The juice of the root is used to treat fevers, urinary troubles, diarrhea and dysentery. Plant sap is used as an eye wash to treat ophthalmic and convulsions in children.