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Boehmeria nivea


Boehmeria nivea (L.) Gaudich.

Family Name: Urticaceae
Common Name: Chinese Grass, Ramie


Family Name
Genus Epithet
Species Epithet
Name Authority
Name Status (botanical)
Common Names

Classifications and Characteristics

Plant Division Angiosperms (Flowering Seed Plants) (Dicotyledon)
Plant Growth Form Shrub
Lifespan (in Singapore) Perennial
Mode of Nutrition Autotrophic


Native Habitat Terrestrial

Description and Ethnobotany

Growth Form A monoecious shrub, it has an upright growth form with a number of straight, slender stems and can reach a height of 1.5 to 2.0m in height. 
Foliage The simple leaves are arranged alternately along the stem and have long petioles. They are heart-shaped (cordate) and have an accuminate leaf apex with finely serrated leaf margin. The leaves are covered with hairs and have a white underside. 
Flowers The flowers are greenish-white in colour and are borne in clusters in the axils. Male and female flowers are found on the same plant. 
Cultivation It is ideally grown in sandy loam, well drained or sandy soil with a moderate supply of water, it does not tolerate waterlogged conditions.
Ethnobotanical Uses Timber & Products: The fibre obtained from the inner bark in the stem is used to make textiles and fabric.

Landscaping Features

Desirable Plant Features Ornamental Foliage
Landscape Uses Parks & Gardens, Hedge / Screening
Thematic Landscaping Economic Garden
Plant & Rootzone Preference or Tolerance Remarks It is ideally grown in sand loam or sandy soils with an adequate supply of water.  

Plant Care and Propagation

Light Preference Full Sun
Water Preference Moderate Water
Rootzone Tolerance Well-Drained Soils
Propagation Method Storage Organ (Rhizome)


Foliage Retention Evergreen
Mature Foliage Colour(s) Green
Mature Foliage Texture(s) Hairy / Hirsute
Foliar Type Simple / Unifoliate
Foliar Arrangement Along Stem Alternate
Foliar Attachment to Stem Petiolate
Foliar Shape(s) Non-Palm Foliage (Cordate)
Foliar Venation Pinnate / Net
Foliar Margin Serrate / Toothed
Foliar Apex - Tip Acuminate
Foliar Base Cordate

Image Repository



Master ID 31450
Species ID 5847
Flora Disclaimer The information in this website has been compiled from reliable sources, such as reference works on medicinal plants. It is not a substitute for medical advice or treatment and NParks does not purport to provide any medical advice. Readers should always consult his/her physician before using or consuming a plant for medicinal purposes.
Species record last updated on: 22 February 2022.

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