Species of Malva L. (Malvaceae) Cultivated in the Western of Santa Catarina State and Conformity With Species Marketed as Medicinal Plants in Southern Brazil

  •  Leyza Paloschi de Oliveira    
  •  Massimo Giuseppe Bovini    
  •  Roseli Lopes da Costa Bortoluzzi    
  •  Mari Inês Carissimi Boff    
  •  Pedro Boff    


The Malva genus presents different species with therapeutic potential and inadequate consumption can occur due to the incorrect identification of the plant in the market. The objective of this study was to identify species of the Malva genus cultivated in the Western Mesoregion of Santa Catarina State-Southern Brazil, and to verify the conformity of products’ labels marketed as dehydrated medicinal plants through the characteristics of the plant parts. The specimens were collected following an unsystematic procedure from households of ten municipalities. The material was identified with the help of specialized bibliography and a specialist. After, they were herborized and deposited in the herbaria of the State University of Santa Catarina (LUSC) and of the Botanical Garden Research Institute of Rio de Janeiro (RB). Five cultivated species of Malva were found (M. nicaeensis, M. parviflora, M. pseudolavatera, M. Sylvestris and M. verticillata). Whereas one species of the Geraniaceae family (Pelargonium graveolens) and three species of the Malvaceae family (Malva sylvestris, M. verticillata and Sida cordifolia) were found in the dehydrated packages. S. cordifolia species was present in 80% of the samples, with 65% of them marketed as M. sylvestris or under the common name of "mallow". Macroscopic images of the species and illustrations of the mericarps were made and an identification chart along with the morphological description for each species was elaborated based on the morphological results. Descriptions of labels for 60 samples were checked for the determination of the dehydrated Malva species marketed. Characteristics of parts of the plant in comparing them with the characteristics described in the specialized literature were performed. The target species of incorrect identifications in the analyzed packages was M. sylvestris.

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.