||Horse (Hippo) fury (bromos); referring to its poison which can drive horses mad
|| Long flower
||Lobelia longiflora L., Laurentia longiflora (L.) Peterm.
||Star of Bethlehem, Madam Fate
An easily recognisable herb because of its rosette leaf arrangement. Its leaves are pinnately-lobed, the margins are lined with teeth, and they lack a petiole. The mid-vein is also very prominent. The white flowers have a long stalk and are five-petalled. It prefers shady areas.
One has to be careful handling this plant as it contains a poisonous white sap (lobelanidine) that can cause irritation on contact. It also may even cause blindness if it gets onto the eye, and give a burning sensation when ingested (FloraFaunaWeb, 2010).
The Star of Bethlehem is widely cultivated as an ornamental plant, and likely as a result, also naturalised in many tropical and subtropical countries (eFloras, 2008).
A patch of lawn covered by Hippobroma longiflora in the National University of Singapore.
Side view showing its short stem.
Pinnately-lobed leaves are lined with teeth.
Flower resembles a star; hence the common name, Star of Bethlehem.
ReferenceseFloras. (2008) Hippobroma longiflora (Linnaeus) G. Don, Gen. Flora of China. Missouri Botanical Garden, St. Louis, MO & Harvard University Herbaria, Cambridge. http://www.efloras.org/. Accessed on 19-Jan-2013.
FloraFaunaWeb. (2010) Laurentia longiflora. National Parks Board, Singapore. https://florafaunaweb.nparks.gov.sg. Accessed on 19-Jan-2013.
Posted: 2013-01-19 / Modified: 2015-01-11