Psoralea pinnata

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PSORALEA PINNATA Pinatta Information

Family: Fabaceae

Common names

  • Fountain bush
  • Fonteinbos
  • Bloukeur
  • Penwortel
  • UmHlonishwa


Psoralae pinnata is an erect shrub or small tree, which grows up to 4 m high, with blue, lilac and white, pea-shaped flowers which bloom from October to December.Although the flowers are seldom very showy, they are delicate and charming on the slender branches.


Psoralae pinnata is a fairly widespread species growing from the Clanwilliam District south towards the Cape Peninsula and then eastwards and northwards through George and Knysna to the Eastern Cape, KwaZulu-Natal, Swaziland and Mphumalanga.

Psoralae pinnata is one of the earliest South African plants to have been cultivated.

 Cultural value

If there is one herb for stress, and anxiety that puts all others to shame, this is the one.

Psoralea pinnata forms an integral part of the Khoisan’s medicinal herbal chest and it deserves the same respect and attention as its more famous counterparts. Psoralea pinnata is used for any stress especially for younger patients. It is particularly chosen for students undergoing stressful times.

Psoralea pinnata works on the emotional kevel rather than the physical. This is why it helps with diabetes, especially in cases where diabetes is aggravated by emotional issues and stress. Traditionally, it is believed that it helps the pancreas in cases where it has been affected by emotional trauma.

Since stress and other emotional issues often trigger herpes symptoms, Psoralea pinnata helps alleviate the symptoms of herpes. Traditionally it is not used as a medicine for herpes but as a supplement. Psoralea pinnata helps cancer patients cope with the traumatic experience caused by cancer.

Growing Psoralea pinnata

As with most Fabaceae, growing Psoralea pinnata is quite difficult from cuttings. It is best grown from seed. A handful of soil taken from below the parent plant and added to the seed tray is generally helpful when sowing Fabaceae seeds. This helps to ensure that the symbiotic mycorrhiza which grow on the roots and encourage nutrient uptake are present.