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biodiversity explorer

the web of life in southern Africa

Genus: Mucuna

Life > eukaryotes > Archaeoplastida > Chloroplastida > Charophyta > Streptophytina > Plantae (land plants) > Tracheophyta (vascular plants) > Euphyllophyta > Lignophyta (woody plants) > Spermatophyta (seed plants) > Angiospermae (flowering plants) > Eudicotyledons > Core Eudicots > Rosids > Eurosid I > Fabales > Fabaceae > Subfamily: Papilionoideae

About 100 species, widespread in warm regions, with five species native to southern Africa and a further three species that are cultivated in the region.

Species native to southern Africa

List from Plants of southern Africa - an online checklist (SANBI), Flora of Zimbabwe and Flora of Mozambique.

Mucuna coriacea

Mucuna ferox

Recorded from Zimbabwe.


Mucuna gigantea


Mucuna poggei

Recorded from Zimbabwe.

Mucuna pruriens (Cow itch, Bengal bean, Velvet bean)

Species cultivated in southern Africa

List from Glen (2002).

Mucuna bennettii

Native to New Guinea.


Mucuna nivea

Native from India to Burma.


Mucuna nova-guineensis

Native to New Guinea.