Plants and Flowers of India and Pune Mimosa pudica Touch me not

Mimosa pudica is both an annual and a perennial. It is a sensitive plant and responds to touch. If touched the leaves foldup in response.  This plant is a great entertainment for kids. It is native to South America and Central America, and is now a pantropical weed. It was first described by  Carl Linnaeus.  Its common names include sensitive plant, humble plant, shameful plant, touch-me-not. In hindi it is called as Chui-mui or Lajwanti, in Bangla it is called as Lajjabati. In Malayalam it is called as Tintarmani. in Marathi it is called as Lajalu. One of the first person to study the movement of Mimosa pudica was Robert Hooke. Now some scientists believe that the movement of the leaves is a defense mechanism against some herbivores. When touched or if there is a disturbance on the leaves then some chemicals are released which force water out of the cell vacuoles this results in collapsing of the cells.
Mimosa pudica
See also:
Mimosa pudica L. (Laajvanti): An overview
Pharmacology and Traditional Uses of Mimosa pudica
Books: Associative and Endophytic Nitrogen-fixing Bacteria and Cyanobacterial Associations

This plant is a great entertainment for KIDS

Mimosa pudica can form root nodules that are habitable by nitrogen fixing bacteria. These bacteria covnert nitrogen to a form that can be easily used by plants.

Mimosa Pudica exhibits the following properties
Nyctinastic movements – In the evening the leaves drop down until sunrise
Seismonastic movements – If the plant is touched or the if the branches are shaken, even if the plant is not watered or other stimuli leads to dropping down of the leaves temporarily. 

Summary
Scientific Name: Mimosa pudica 
Common Name: Touch Me not
Indian Name: Chui-mui or Lajwanti
Pronunciation: Mi-mosa pu-dica
Native to: South America and Central America
Found In: Pantropical Regions
Sun Exposure: Partly Shade
Max Height: 50 cm, grows upto 1 meter with support
Drought-tolerant:
Propagation Methods: Seeds, Stem Cuttings
Bloom Color : Pink
Bloom Time: Summer Early Fall
Foliage: Evergreen
Duration: Perennial
Invasive potential: Invasive Global Invasive Species Database
Plant Character: Creeper
USDA Hardiness: 11 to 13b
Uses: Entertainment for kids
Maintenance: Low
Medicinal: Yes please see the disclaimer
Attraction:
Soil: Well drained
Soil pH: 6.4 slightly acidic to 7.5 Neutral , Soil pH: What it Means

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