Aeschynomene brasiliana

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Axillary inflorescences, pods and seeds.

Prostrate to decumbent habit.

Prostrate to decumbent habit.

Flowers, and foliage with viscid stems.

Foliage - pinnate leaves.

Seed production in northern Australia.

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Scientific name

Aeschynomene brasiliana (Poir.) DC.

Subordinate taxon :
Aeschynomene brasiliana (Poir.) DC. var. brasiliana


Aeschynomene biflora (Miller) Fawcett & Rendle
Aeschynomene guaricana Pittier
Aeschynomene paucijuga DC. var. subscabra DC.
Cassia biflora Miller
Cassia houstoniana Colladon
Hedysarum brasilianum Poir.
Hedysarum hirtum Vell. Conc.


Family: Fabaceae (alt. Leguminosae) subfamily: Faboideae tribe: Aeschymoneneae subtribe: Aeschynomeninae. Also placed in: Papilionaceae.

Common names

Brazilian jointvetch, pega pega.

Morphological description

Prostrate or decumbent herb with stems to about 2 m, glandular-hispidulous (bristly and sticky), also crisp-pubescent, woody near the crown.  Leaves pinnate, 2-3 cm long, to 22 foliolate, with leaflets obovate-elliptic to oblong, 5-15 mm long and 3-8 mm wide, sparsely pubescent to glabrous on the upper surface.  Inflorescence comprising 1-8 yellow flowers, calyx hispidulous, standard about 6 mm long.  Pod with 2-5 segments, crisp-pubescent and also glandular-hispidulous, each article about 2.5-3 mm long and 2-3 mm wide.  Seeds dark brown, about 2 mm long and 1-1.5 mm wide;  200,000-300,000 seeds/kg.


Native to:
North America:  Mexico (Jalisco).
Central America:  Belize, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico (Chiapas), Nicaragua, Panama.
Caribbean:  Cuba, Trinidad and Tobago (Trinidad).
South America:  Bolivia, Brazil (Amapá, Pará, Bahia, Goias, Ceará, Rio de Janeiro), Colombia, Ecuador, French Guiana, Guyana, Paraguay, Peru, Suriname, Venezuela.

Widespread in tropical America, along roadsides, in brushland, savannah and open pine-oak woods.


Legume enhancement of poor quality grassland.  No value for cutting systems due to sticky nature of stems and fruit.


Soil requirements

Mostly collected from sandy soils of near neutral pH .  Although showing best performance on friable, sandy-surfaced soils, A. brasiliana