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Centipeda minima (L.) A. Br. & Asch.

Centipeda minima (L.) A. Br. & Asch.




Artemisia minima L., Cen­tipeda orbicularis Lour.

Vernacular Names


Sneezeweed, sneezewort.


Mbakoan (Javanese).


Harangan (Tagalog), pisik (Bisaya).


Krataai chan (Central), yaa krachaam (Peninsu­lar), mueat lot (Eastern).


C[us]c m[awr]n, c[os]c m[awr]n, c[or] the.

Geographical Distributions

Centipeda mini­ma occurs from Africa throughout Afghanistan and India to China and Japan, and southwards throughout Southeast Asia to Australia and the Pa­cific Islands.


Centipeda mini­ma is a small annual, aromatic herb that can grow up to 8-20(-30) cm tall. It is often branched and often prostrate. The stems are slender and ribbed. The internodes are 2-10 mm long and 1 mm large, sparsely to densely covered with fine white and cobwebby hairs.

The leaves are alternate, simple, narrowly spatulate, measure 5-20 mm x 1-7 mm, attenuate at base, obtuse and mucronulate at apex, sometimes 3-lobed at the apex and entire at the lower part. The margins are pinnatilobed or dentate (lobes or teeth mucronulate) and with sparsely hairs on both sides.

The petiole and stipules are absent. The inflores­cence is an axillary head which is 2-4 mm in diametre. The peduncle is absent, and with 2-seriate involucral bracts. It is oblong, about 1 mm long, with mem­branous margins, subdentate, with long cotton-like hairs and rounded apex.The flowers are all tubular and with numerous marginal flow­ers. The petal is 0.2 mm long, hairy, whitish but with few disk flowers. There are four anthers 0.4 mm long and apical­ly thickened. The ovary is obconical and 4-angled. The style is slender, short and bifid.

The fruit is an oblong, curved ach­ene, 1 mm long and 4-angled. The angles are with appressed hairs 1 mm long, white and with more or less persis­tent pistil. The pappus is absent. The seedling is with an epigeal germi­nation, with 2 mm long hypocotyl, subses­sile cotyledons which are elliptical, measuring 1.8 mm x 0.9 mm, attenuate at base, rounded at apex and hairless. The epicotyl is absent where the first leaves are opposite, subsessile, elliptical, measure1.7-2 mm x 1.1-1.3 mm, with distinct midvein, attenuate base, entire margin, apiculate apex and smooth.

Ecology / Cultivation

Centipeda minima is common in humid open locations, on thinly grassed patches in savannas, on banks of permanent waterholes, and on muddy banks of rivers. In Indo-China, it is common in fal­low rice-fields and waste lands. It occurs from sea level up to 30 m in Java, but up to 1200-2400 m altitude elsewhere.

Line Drawing / Photograph



  1. Plant Resources of South-East Asia No.12(2): Medicinal and poisonous plants 2.

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