Persicaria chinensis (L.) H. Gross

Etymology Genus Referring to the likeness of the leaves to a peach tree
Species Of Chinese origins
Family Polygalaceae
Synonyms Polygonum chinense L.
Common Names Chinese knotweed, Creeping Smartweed
Status Exotic: Naturalised
Form Herb
Native Distribution China, Indian Subcontinent, Indochina, Malesia


Persicaria chinensis is a creeping herb that is sometimes found in open wastelands or drains. The alternate branching with leaves appear in a zig-zag fashion. The leaves have a cordite or truncated base and minutely crenate margins. The mid-veins and petiole are commonly reddish, and the leaf surface have a dark spot near the centre of the lamina.

There are a few varieties of this species, and the one found in Singapore is Persicaria chinensis var. chinensis. It is characterised by leaf blades which are ovate or narrowly ovate (eFloras, 2020).

Interesting Facts:


A clump growing up from a drain along Upper Thomson Road (2020).

Branch growing in a zig-zag form.

Leaf with red mid-vein and a light smudge at the centre.

Leaf underside.



eFloras (2020) Polygonum chinense Linnaeus. Flora of China. Missouri Botanical Garden, St. Louis, MO & Harvard University Herbaria, Cambridge. Accessed on 5-Mar-2020.

Author: Jake
Posted: 2020-03-05