Click on the language to view common names.
Common Names in Chinese:
Niu Xi, Nui Xi
Common Names in English:
Niu Xi, Ox-Knee, Pig's Knee, Pigs Knee
Common Names in Korean:
, or lianas. Leaves alternate or opposite, entire, exstipulate
. Flowers small, bisexual
, or sterile
and reduced, subtended by 1 membranous bract and 2 bracteoles, solitary or aggregated in cymes. Inflorescences elongated or condensed spikes (heads
, or thyrsoid
structures of varying complexity. Bracteoles membranous or scarious
. Tepals 3-5, membranous, scarious or subleathery, 1-, 3-, 5-, or 7(-23) -veined. Stamens as many as tepals and opposite these, rarely fewer than tepals; filaments
into a cup
or ± entirely into a tube
, filament lobes present or absent, pseudostaminodes present or absent; anthers
(1- or) 2-loculed, dorsifixed
, introrsely dehiscent
. Ovary superior, 1-loculed; ovules 1 to many; style persistent
, short and indistinct or long and slender; stigma capitate, penicillate
, 2-lobed or forming 2 filiform
branches. Fruit a dry utricle or a fleshy
capsule, indehiscent, irregularly bursting, or circumscissile. Seeds lenticular
, subglobose, or shortly cylindric
About 70 genera and 900 species: worldwide; 15 genera (one introduced ) and 44 species (three endemic, 14 introduced) in China.
Morphology of the androecium, perianth (tepals), and the inflorescence has traditionally been used to circumscribe genera and tribes . Pseudostaminodia are interstaminal appendages with variously shaped apices. Filament appendages are the lateral appendages of filaments (one on each side) . The basic structure of the inflorescence is the cyme (branchlets arising from the bracteole axils, the bracteoles serving as bracts for upper flowers), which can be reduced to one flower with two bracteoles and a bract. Units of dispersal vary considerably (capsules opening with lower part persistent, flower and bracteoles falling together, or cymose partial inflorescences breaking off above bract) and can be characteristic for genera. Several genera possess long trichomes serving dispersal at the base of the tepals.
. Stems erect
. Leaves opposite, petiolate
to orbiculate, or broadly rhombate, margins
entire. Inflorescences terminal
, many-flowered, simple
spikes or few-branched panicles; flowers crowded together at tips
, becoming more widely spaced toward base
. Flowers bisexual
, often becoming deflexed
with age; tepals 4 or 5, basally connate
, without ornamentation, coriaceous
, becoming indurate
in fruit, ± glabrous
basally connate into short tubes
4-locular; pseudostaminodes 5; ovary obovoid
; ovule 1; style elongate; stigma 1, capitate. Utricles enclosed by and falling with indurate tepals, elliptic or cylindric
, membranous, indehiscent. Seeds 1, inverted
, obovoid or ovoid
Species 8-12: c and se United States, Mexico, West Indies, Central America, South America, tropical , subtropical , and warm-temperate regions of the Old World.
The groups of plants referred to as Achyranthes and Alternanthera have been subject to considerable nomenclatural confusion, primarily because P. C. Standley (1915) designated Achyranthes repens Linnaeus as the lectotype species of Achyranthes. As a result, species that had been placed in Achyranthes were transferred to Centrostachys Wallich, and species that had been in Alternanthera were transferred to Achyranthes. A. A. Bullock (1957; see also R. Melville 1958) showed that Standley's lectotypification was incorrect and that the type species of Achyranthes is Achyranthes aspera Linnaeus. The generic concepts of Achyranthes and Alternanthera then returned to those prior to 1915.
Flowers: Flower Color: inconspicuous, none
Size: 36-48" tall.
Culture: Space 3-6" apart.
Soil: Minimum pH: 6.1 • Maximum pH: 7.5
Sunlight: Sun Exposure: Sun to Partial Shade.
Temperature: Cold Hardiness: 6a, 6b, 7a, 7b. (map)
- Whittaker & Margulis,1978
- Haeckel, 1866
- Cavalier-Smith, 1981
- Sinnott, 1935 ex Cavalier-Smith, 1998
- Vascular Plants
- Kenrick & Crane, 1997
- Brongniart, 1843
- Takhtajan, 1967
- Takhtajan, 1967
- Perleb, 1826
- Family: Amaranthaceae () - Adanson, 1763 ex A.L. de Jussieu, 1789, nom. cons. - amaranthes, pigweed
- Suborder: Chenopodiineae ()
- Order: Caryophyllales () - Perleb, 1826
- Superorder: Caryophyllanae () - Takhtajan, 1967
- Subclass: Caryophyllidae () - Takhtajan, 1967
- Class: Spermatopsida () - Brongniart, 1843
- Infraphylum: Radiatopses () - Kenrick & Crane, 1997
- Subphylum: Euphyllophytina ()
- Phylum: Tracheophyta () - Sinnott, 1935 ex Cavalier-Smith, 1998 - Vascular Plants
- Subkingdom: Viridaeplantae () - Cavalier-Smith, 1981
- Kingdom: Plantae () - Haeckel, 1866 - Plants
: Blume Publication
: Bijdr. Fl.
Ned. Ind. 11: 545
1826 [24 Jan 1826]
Name Status: Accepted Name .
Last scrutiny: 17-Oct-2001
Members of the genus Achyranthes
ZipcodeZoo has pages for 14 species, subspecies, varieties, forms, and cultivars in this genus:
A. amaranthoides (Jiang Guo Xian) · A. aspera (Devil's Horsewhip) · A. aspera var. aspera (Devil's Horsewhip) · A. aspera var. pubescens (Devils Horsewhip) · A. atollensis (Hawai'i Chaff Flower) · A. bidentata (Niu Xi) · A. japonica (Japanese Chaff Flower) · A. japonica var. hachijoensis (Japanese Chaff Flower) · A. lanuginosa (Woolly Tidestromia) · A. mutica (Blunt Chaff Flower) · A. splendens (Maui Chaff Flower) · A. splendens rotundata var. rotundata (Maui Chaff Flower) · A. splendens var. rotundata (Round Chaff Flower) · A. splendens var. splendens (Maui Chaff Flower)
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- A hand-book to the flora of Ceylon: containing descriptions of all the species of flowering plants indigenous to the island, and notes on their history, distribution, and uses: with an atlas of plates illustrating some of the more inte by Henry Trimen. London: Dulau, 1893-1931. url p. 404.
- A manual of poisonous plants, chiefly of eastern North America, with brief notes on economic and medicinal plants, and numerous illustrations, by L.H. Pammel Cedar Rapids, Ia., The Torch press, 1911. url p. 919.
- A manual of poisonous plants: chiefly of eastern North America, with brief notes on economic and medicinal plants, and numerous illustrations / by L. H. Pammel. 1911 Cedar Rapids, Ia.: The Torch Press, 1910-11. url index, page 919.
- An enumeration of Philippine flowering plants, Manila, Bureau of Printing, 1922-26. url p. 131.
- Bengal plants: a list of the phanerogams, ferns and fern-allies indigenous to, or commonly cultivated in, the Lower provinces and Chittagong, with definitions of the natural orders and genera, and keys to the genera and species. 2 1903 Calcutta: Botanical Survey of India1903. url p. 875.
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- Bulletin of the New York Botanical Garden. Lancaster, Pa.: Published for the Garden by the New Era Printing Co., url p. 217.
- Catalogue of the plants collected by Mr. & Mrs. P.A. Talbot in the Oban district, South Nigeria / by A.B. Rendle. .. [et al.]. London: Printed by order of the Trustees of the British Museum, 1913. url p. 142.
- Contributions from the United States National Herbarium 45 2003 Washington, D.C.: Smithsonian Institution Press, 1890- url p. 136, p. 490.
- Contributions to the flora of Siam [Aberdeen]Printed for the University1912- url p. 173.
- Contributions to the flora of Siam. .. / by William Grant Craib. .. [Aberdeen]: Printed for the University of Aberdeen, 1912- url p. 173.
- Entomological news. [Philadelphia]American Entomological Society, 1925- url p. 122.
- Flora Malesiana. general editor, C.G.G.J. van Steenis. Djakarta: Noordhoff-Kolff, 1950- url p. 88.
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- Guide to the Economic Museum of the New York Botanical Garden. New York, 1921. url p. 217.
- Journal of the Washington Academy of Sciences. Washington [etc., Washington Academy of Sciences] url p. 76.
- Manual of vascular plants of the lower Yangtze Valley, China. Corvallis, Oregon State College url p. 104.
- Miyabe-festschrift, or A collection of botanical papers presented to Prof. Dr. Kingo Miyabe on the occasion of the twenty-fifth anniversary of his academic service by his friends and pupils. Tokio, Rokumeikwan, 1911. url p. 321.
- Notes from the Royal Botanic Garden, Edinburgh. 7 1912-1913 Edinburgh: H. M. Stationery Off. url p. 266, p. 299, p. 334.
- Oliver, D. Flora of tropical Africa /by Daniel Oliver. .. assisted by other botanists. 6 1909-1913 London: L. Reeve and co., 1868-1999. url p. 62, p. 64.
- Plants of the Punjab: a descriptive key to the flora of the Punjab, North-west Frontier Province, and Kashmir / by C.J. Bamber. Lahore: Supt. Govt. Printing, Punjab, 1916. url p. 181.
- Plants of the Punjab; a descriptive key to the flora of the Punjab, North-west Frontier Province and Kashmir. LahorePrinted by The Superintendent Government Printing1916 url p. 181.
- Proceedings of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. Boston: Metcalf and Co., 1846-1958 url p. 200, p. 509.
- Rendle, A. B., E. G. Baker, S. le M. Moore & H. F. Wernham Catalogue of the plants collected by Mr. & Mrs. P.A. Talbotin the Oban district, South Nigeria, by A. B. Rendle, E.G. Baker, and H.F. Wernham, S. Moore, and others. With seventeen plates. 1913 London, Printed by order of the Trustees, 1913. url p. 142.
- Seemann, B. Flora vitiensis: a description of the plants of the Viti or Fiji islands, with an account of their history, uses, and properties /By Berthold Seemann;. .. plates by Walter Fitch. 1865 - 18 London: L. Reeve, 1865-73. url p. 198.
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- Sturtevant's notes on edible plants / Edited by U.P. Hedrick. Albany: J.B. Lyon, 1919. url p. 22.
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- The Journal of the College of Science, Imperial University of Tokyo, Japan = Tokyo Teikoku Daigaku kiyo. Rika. Tokyo, Japan: The University, 1898-1925. url p. 327.
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- The flora of the Nilgiri and Pulney Hill-tops / by P.F. Fyson; with 580 full page illustrations and 4 maps by Lady Bourne, Mrs. Fyson and others. Madras: Printed by the Supt., Govt. Press, 1915-1920. url p. 472.
- Kuan Ke-chien. 1979. Amaranthaceae. In: Kung Hsien-wu & Tsien Cho-po, eds., Fl. Reipubl. Popularis Sin. 25(2): 194241.
- Brands, S.J. (comp.) 1989-present. The Taxonomicon. Universal Taxonomic Services, Zwaag, The Netherlands. Accessed January 10, 2012.
Accessed through GBIF Data Portal November 15, 2007:
- Australian National Herbarium
- , Australian National Herbarium
- Harvard University Herbaria, Harvard University Herbaria
- Herbarium of the University of Aarhus, The AAU Herbarium Database
- Missouri Botanical Garden, Missouri Botanical Garden
- National Herbarium of New South Wales, Plants of Papua New Guinea
- National Institute of Genetics, ROIS, Herbarium Specimens of Museum of Nature and Human Activities, Hyogo Pref., Japan
- Taiwan Biodiversity Information Facility, Magnoliophyta
- Biodiversity Heritage Library NamebankID: 2646923
- Catalogue of Life Accepted Name Code: ITS-20757
- Global Biodiversity Information Facility Taxonkey: 13740635
- Globally Unique Identifier: urn:lsid:ipni.org:names:58678-1
- GRIN Nomen Number: 1314
- International Plant Names Index (IPNI) ID: 58678-1
- Zipcode Zoo Species Identifier: 415246
- Bojian Bao, Thomas Borsch & Steven E. Clemants "Amaranthaceae". in Flora of China Vol. 5 Page 415. Published by Science Press (Beijing) and Missouri Botanical Garden Press. Online at EFloras.org. [back]
- Kenneth R. Robertson "Achyranthes". in Flora of North America Vol. 4 Page 406, 435. Oxford University Press. Online at EFloras.org. [back]