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Common Name: Common Lespedeza
Kummerowia striata is a Annual up to 0.20 metres tall.
It has edible, medicinal and miscellaneous uses.
E. Asia - China, Japan, Korea, Manchuria.
Waste ground and roadsides all over Japan[
]. Clayey, sandy and gravelly soils, riverbanks, roadsides and non-populated areas, always in large quantities[
We have very little information on this species but it should succeed as a spring-sown annual in Britain. See the plants native habitat for ideas on its cultivation needs.
Plants sometimes produce cleistogamous flowers.
This species has a symbiotic relationship with certain soil bacteria, these bacteria form nodules on the roots and fix atmospheric nitrogen. Some of this nitrogen is utilized by the growing plant but some can also be used by other plants growing nearby[
]. When removing plant remains at the end of the growing season, it is best to only remove the aerial parts of the plant, leaving the roots in the ground to decay and release their nitrogen.
Seed - cooked. The seed can be ground into a meal and used with cereal flours in making bread etc[
]. The seed contains 26.4 - 51.9% protein and 4.3 - 7.3% fat[
Young plant - cooked[
]. A nutritional analysis is available[
The whole plant is used medicinally as a diuretic, for reducing fever, and treating diarrhea[
]. A decoction of the plant is used in the treatment of extreme physical debility and swellings[
]. It is boiled with Centella asiatica and Prunella vulgaris for the treatment of dysentery, headache and vertigo[
]. A broth is used to improve the appetite[
The plant is fast growing and has an extensive root system. It has been widely used, especially in N. America, for restoring fertility to worn-out soils[
Seed - pre-soak for 12 hours in warm water and sow in situ in mid spring.