Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Peperomia pellucida 草胡椒

Herbs , annual or short-lived perennial, erect or decumbent, freely branched, 10-50 cm, glabrous, without black, glandular dots. Leaves alternate; petiole ca. 1/2 length of blade, glabrous. Leaf blade palmately 5-7-veined, broadly ovate to deltate, 0.6-4 × 0.5-3 cm, base truncate, rounded, or cordate, apex acute to slightly acuminate; surfaces glabrous. Spikes axillary, terminal, and opposite leaves, solitary, rarely 2-more, loosely flowered, 2-6 cm, mature fruiting spikes 1-2 mm diam. Fruits sessile, very broadly ovoid to globose, 0.5-0.7 × 0.4-0.5 mm, longitudinally ribbed with ladderlike reticulations; beak minute, conic, ca. 0.1 mm.

Flowering all year. In shaded woods and around nurseries and greenhouses, along coastal plain; 0-20 m; Fla., Ga., La.; Mexico; West Indies; Central America; n South America.

Peperomia pellucida has shown antibacterial activity against Staphylococcus aureus , Bacillus subtilis , Pseudomonas aeruginosa , and Escherichia coli ; it could have potential as a broad spectrum antibiotic

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