Senna obtusifolia

Senna obtusifolia (L.) H. S. Irwin & Barneby

Synonym: Cassia obtusifolia

Common Names: Low Senna

Family: Fabaceae

Habit: Senna obtusifolia grows as a medium shrub to small tree sometimes up to 1.5 m in height. The bipinnately compound leaves are arranged alternately, to 5 cm in length.  The petioles have a distinct gland between the lower pinnae which is elongate and slender.  The leaflets are in 3 pairs, obovate, mucronate/apiculate at the leaf apex, with an entire margin. All vegetation is slightly pubescent.

The complete, perfect, zygomorphic flowers are arranged in groups of 1-3. The calyx has 5, greenish, unfused, oblong sepals. The corolla has 5, yellow, unfused petals, none of which form a keel.  There are 10 stamens of which only 7 are fertile.  The ovary is superior and forms an elongate and curved legume at maturity.

Habitat: Senna obtusifolia grows in Human Altered environments in and around abandoned fields/houses and roadsides.

Distribution: Senna obtusifolia occurs on central and northern island groupings within the Lucayan Archipelago, as a doubtful native, as well as in the greater Caribbean region, Central and South America.  It now grows as a non-native in the southern United States, throughout Africa, the Middle East, the Indian subcontinent, and Australia.

Medicinal/Cultural/Economic usage: Senna obtusifolia is not known to be used medicinally the Lucayan Archipelago.  It is grown as an ornamental.