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Cancer bush Kankerbos
Short-lived perennial shrublet, up to 1 m high; occurring in fynbos and karroid vegetation, often along roadsides. Leaves pinnately compound with numerous small leaflets, silvery grey due to a dense cover of silvery hairs. Flowers (see page 140) in clusters, bright red. Pods inflated, papery, reddish-tinged when young. Flowers pollinated by sunbirds; seed dispersed when pods are blown around by wind. A popular traditional remedy (extremely bitter-tasting) for a variety of ailments, including
I ■■■lllllll liMIUIIHIIUI mill I colds, influenza, diabetes, varicose veins, liver problems and cancer. Plants are very palatable to livestock and of high nutritional value; may give milk a bitter taste. The species of Sutherlandia (about six) are all very similar-looking and di fficult to tell apart. The group contains anticancer compounds.
Tephrosia grandiflora Large pink tephrosia
Fabaceae All year Grootpienk-tephrosia
bushveld and grassland. Leaflets 3-5 pairs, ±15x6 mm, with fine silvery grey hairs below; stipules narrowly ovate, ± 10-32 mm long, longer than wide. ^Flowers (see page 140) pea-like, clustered in terminal racemes, are large (± 20 mm long), bright magenta-pink. Pods ± 30 x 8 mm, many-seeded. Attractive garden plant. Root infusions used to treat chest ailments. Like other members of the genus the plant contains tephrosm, rotenone and related compounds that have strong insecticidal and piscicidal properties. Pounded leaves, pods or roots thrown into a pool suffocate fish, thus paralysing them so that they can be easily caught Fish so poisoned can be eaten without ill effect.
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