Malpighia urens L.

Cow Itch Cherry, Stinging Barbados Cherry


Family: Malpighiaceae

Genus: Malpighia

Description: 

Evergreen, lance-shaped, opposite leaves. White flowers.

From Bot. Reg. It is an upright branching shrub, seldom exceeding 4 or 5 feet in height, with a brown bark, pubescent on the young wood. Leaves opposite, scarcely 3 inches in length, oblong with a short point, beset, particularly underneath, with numerous straight parallel bristle-shaped stinging prickles...

History: 

Published in Sp. Pl. 1: 426 in 1753.

Native to Cuba, Dominican Republic, Haiti, Jamaica.

Also published in Bot. Reg. 2: 96 in 1816.

From Bot. Reg. The present species is called in Jamaica, where it grows naturally, " the Couhage-(corruptly? Cow-itch) Cherry," from the stinging foliage.

Native of South America. Cultivated in 1787 by Mr. P. Miller.


Sources of Information

© 2010-12 Lisa J. Miner