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Cardiospermum halicacabum - L.

Common Name Heart Seed, Balloon vine
Family Sapindaceae
USDA hardiness 8-11
Known Hazards None known
Habitats Moist thickets and waste ground in Eastern N. America[43].
Range E. Asia - India. N. America. Africa. Locally naturalized in S. Europe[50].
Edibility Rating    (1 of 5)
Other Uses    (1 of 5)
Weed Potential Yes
Medicinal Rating    (2 of 5)
Care (info)
Half Hardy Moist Soil Full sun
Cardiospermum halicacabum Heart Seed, Balloon vine

Cardiospermum halicacabum Heart Seed, Balloon vine


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Physical Characteristics

 icon of manicon of climber
Cardiospermum halicacabum is a deciduous Climber growing to 3 m (9ft 10in).
See above for USDA hardiness. It is hardy to UK zone 9 and is frost tender. It is in flower from July to August, and the seeds ripen from August to October. The species is hermaphrodite (has both male and female organs).
Suitable for: light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils and prefers well-drained soil. Suitable pH: mildly acid, neutral and basic (mildly alkaline) soils. It cannot grow in the shade. It prefers moist soil.

UK Hardiness Map US Hardiness Map


Cardiospermum acuminatum Miq. Cardiospermum corycodes Kunze. Cardiospermum glabrum Schumach. & Thonn

Plant Habitats

Woodland Garden Dappled Shade; South Wall. By. West Wall. By.

Edible Uses

Edible Parts: Leaves  Shoots
Edible Uses:

Leaves and young shoots - cooked[1, 105, 177, 272]. Used as a spinach[2]. Edible parts: Leaves, Seeds, Fruit, Stems [1d].

References   More on Edible Uses

Medicinal Uses

Plants For A Future can not take any responsibility for any adverse effects from the use of plants. Always seek advice from a professional before using a plant medicinally.
Diaphoretic  Diuretic  Emetic  Emmenagogue  Laxative  Refrigerant  Rubefacient  Stomachic

The whole plant is diaphoretic, diuretic, emetic, emmenagogue, laxative, refrigerant, rubefacient, stomachic and sudorific[218]. It is used in the treatment of rheumatism, nervous diseases, stiffness of the limbs and snakebite[240, 243]. The leaves are rubefacient, they are applied as a poultice in the treatment of rheumatism[240, 243]. A tea made from them is used in the treatment of itchy skin[218]. Salted leaves are used as a poultice on swellings[218].The leaf juice has been used as a treatment for earache[240, 243]. The root is diaphoretic, diuretic, emmenagogue, laxative and rubefacient[240]. It is occasionally used in the treatment of rheumatism, lumbago and nervous diseases[240].

References   More on Medicinal Uses

The Bookshop: Edible Plant Books

Our Latest books on Perennial Plants For Food Forests and Permaculture Gardens in paperback or digital formats.

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Other Uses

Ornamental. Among the "Ten Sacred Flowers of Kerala State in India, collectively known as Dasapushpam.

Special Uses

References   More on Other Uses

Cultivation details

Prefers a moist soil and a sunny sheltered position[138], but succeeds in most soils[1]. A frost-tender deciduous climber, it is grown as an annual in Britain[188].

References   Carbon Farming Information and Carbon Sequestration Information

Temperature Converter

Type a value in the Celsius field to convert the value to Fahrenheit:



The PFAF Bookshop

Plants For A Future have a number of books available in paperback and digital form. Book titles include Edible Plants, Edible Perennials, Edible Trees,Edible Shrubs, Woodland Gardening, and Temperate Food Forest Plants. Our new book is Food Forest Plants For Hotter Conditions (Tropical and Sub-Tropical).

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Plant Propagation

Seed - sow spring in a greenhouse. Germination usually takes place within 3 - 4 weeks at 20°c[138]. When they are large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in a greenhouse for at least their first winter. Plant them out into their permanent positions in late spring or early summer, after the last expected frosts.

Other Names

If available other names are mentioned here

Preferred Common Name: Balloonvine. Spanish: Revienta caballo. French: Pois de merveille. Portuguese: balaozinho. Cuba: farolito (var. halicacabum). Germany: Ballonrebe; Blasenerbse; Herzsame. Italy: Vesicaria del cuore. Netherlands: Blaaserwt. Other names: Ambeang baek, Balloon Vine, Buddakakara, Buputwane, Chenet, Fugamane, Ikhambi-leziduli, Kanphuti, Kapal-phodi, Kapal-phor, Karnasphota, Karolio, Kesh lahara, Khok-kra-om, Kok ka awm, Lataphatkari, Likhambilemamba, Love-in-a-puff, Moodacottan, Msendechare, Mudakkathan, Mudakkatran, Mudukottan, Nella goolisienda, Paria gunong, Poniu, Pwepwete, Rudda kankarakoo, Sibjhul, Umubogobogo, Winter cherry,

Native Plant Search

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Found In

Countries where the plant has been found are listed here if the information is available

Africa, Angola, Argentina, Asia, Australia, Bahamas, Bermuda, Bhutan, Bolivia, Botswana, Brazil, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cambodia, Cameroon, Cape Verde, Central Africa, Central America, China, Colombia, Comoros, Congo, Côte d'Ivoire, Cuba, Cyprus, Dominica, East Africa, East Timor, Ecuador, Egypt, Equatorial-Guinea, Ethiopia, Fiji, Ghana, Greece, Grenada, Guatemala, Guiana, Guinea, Guinée, Guinea-Bissau, Guyana, Haiti, Hawaii, India, Indochina, Indonesia, Iraq, Ivory Coast, Jamaica, Japan, Kenya, Laos, Lesotho, Liberia, Madagascar, Malawi, Malaysia, Maldives, Mali, Mediterranean, Mexico, Mozambique, Myanmar, Namibia, Nepal, New Caledonia, Nigeria, North Africa, North America, Oman, Pacific, Pakistan, Papua New Guinea, PNG, Paraguay, Peru, Philippines, Puerto Rico, Rwanda, Samoa, Sao Tome and Principe, Saudi Arabia, SE Asia, Senegal, Seychelles, Sierra Leone, Solomon Islands, Somalia, South Africa, Southern Africa, South America, Spain, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Suriname, Swaziland, Taiwan, Tanzania, Thailand, Timor-Leste, Togo, Tonga, Uganda, USA, Vanuatu, Venezuela, Vietnam, West Africa, Yemen, Zambia, Zimbabwe,

Weed Potential

Right plant wrong place. We are currently updating this section. Please note that a plant may be invasive in one area but may not in your area so it’s worth checking.

This plant can be weedy or invasive. Noxious Weed Information in the US: Alabama - Class C noxious weed. Arkansas - Noxious weed. South Carolina - Plant pest. Texas - Noxious plant. In New Zealand it is listed on the National Pest Plant Accord. Often found as a weed along roads and rivers.

Conservation Status

IUCN Red List of Threatened Plants Status : This taxon has not yet been assessed.

Related Plants
Latin NameCommon NameHabitHeightHardinessGrowthSoilShadeMoistureEdibleMedicinalOther

Growth: S = slow M = medium F = fast. Soil: L = light (sandy) M = medium H = heavy (clay). pH: A = acid N = neutral B = basic (alkaline). Shade: F = full shade S = semi-shade N = no shade. Moisture: D = dry M = Moist We = wet Wa = water.


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Botanical References


Links / References

For a list of references used on this page please go here

Readers comment

Nini Tun   Thu Mar 1 2007

This is the website of our family. You can learn alot about medicinal plants in this site. We translanted from Myanmar (Burmese) to English. Get knowledge.

indira   Tue Sep 4 2007

does this plant have any antimicrpobial activity

karthiga   Tue Sep 4 2007

what the procedures to estimate alkaloids,terpenoids,flavonids,tannis

alessa beringer   Tue Jun 10 2008

I am trying to buy cardiospermum halicacabum leaves as an herb to use . Can you help me in anyway to find someone that I can buy them from ?? Thank you, Alessa

samuel   Mon Feb 2 2009

Dear sir, if you need of Cardiospermum halicacabum please contect me i will send you at your place freely and requst you to pay the trosporting cost only

RAVICHANDRAN.S   Sat Apr 11 2009

ravichandran.s 11.04.2009 Does this plant have any Anti inflammatory activity.

Nambatya   Sat May 16 2009

Can this plant be used to lower the effects of HIV / AIDS

Padma   Fri Jul 17 2009

I am in need of Cardiospermum halicacabum whole plant dried 20 kg. can you supply.

arasu   Sat Sep 26 2009

Hi we can supply the herbal Cardiospermum halicacabum .very use full herbs, if you want the items send us your feed back soon, reg arasu www.tanhoardexports.com [email protected]

an hoard exports

Divya.H   Wed Dec 23 2009

does the plant have any anti-hypertensive activity?

SP.Bhuvaneshwaran.   Thu Dec 31 2009

Please sayme the methods to collect diferent extracts from Cardiospermum halicacabum and give me the procedures with links. Thank you.

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