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Asiatic Pennywort

pegaga

Scientific name : Centella asiatica (L.) Urban.

Common name : Asiatic Pennywort, Gotu Kola

Local name : Pegaga

Family : Umbelliferae

 

Introduction:

This plant and its preparation have been in use since ancient times especially in the Ayurvedic medical system of India and in the folk medicine of China and Madagascar. It is recommended by the World Health Organization (WHO) as one of the most important medicinal plant species to be conserved and cultivated. In Malaysia, although it has been used by our traditional healers in their herbal remedies, but its popularity is confined more as a traditional vegetable or an 'ulam' especially among the Malay communities rather than a medicinal plant.

 

Plant Description:

Pegaga is a small, annual, slender, creeping herb. It has long-stalked, green leaves with rounded apices which have smooth texture with palmately netted veins. At the moment there are three distinguishable pegaga subspecies namely Pegaga salad, Pegaga kerinting or nyonya and Pegaga biasa or pegaga ubi. The recommended race for commercial production at this stage is pegaga ubi.

 

Plant Habit:

Pegaga grows wildly under a wide range of conditions, some races prefer light shade, while others do well in open sunny areas. Some even grow under more harsh conditions like on stone walls. In the wild, most of these plant are found in wet or moist surrounding like swamps, along the margins of lakes, ponds and have also been seen growing in paddy fields .

 

Plant Parts Used:

Whole plant, aerial parts, roots

 
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