Greenleaf desmodium

Desmodium intortum

Greenleaf desmodium is a large trailing and scrambling perennial.  It has a strong taproot and the long trailing stems can root at the nodes if in contact with moist soil.  These stems are grooved, hairy and reddish-brown in colour and branch freely;  it is finer and less hairy than ‘Silverleaf’ (D. uncinatum ).  The trifoliate leaflets, to 7 cm x 5 cm, have reddish-brown flecking on the upper surface.  Although pointed, they are more round than those of D. uncinatum .  The deep pink flowers are produced on a compact terminal raceme ;  they develop to narrow segmented pods to 5 cm long, holding 8–12 seeds.  The segments break up when mature and, being covered with short hooked hairs, will stick to hair or clothing.