Commelina ensifolia and C. diffusa Wandering Jew, Scurvy Plant.
Commelinaceae Early settlers used the plant as a green vegetable to combat scurvy. The two species of Commelina are similar but can be separated by the spathe. C. ensifolia has the spathes funnel-shaped and base fused, while C. diffusa has spathes conduplicate with bases cordate not fused.        Comelina diffusa was previously C. cyanea.







Flowers of both species may sometimes have a reduced third petal.

(Picture supplied by Ian Sutton)




conduplicate = folded lengthwise

cordate = heart-shaped

spathe = a large bract enclosing a flower


All pictures Copyright Graeme V. surname 2004. All rights reserved.