Stinging Velvet Beans
Mucuna Pruriens known by common names such as Stinging Velvet Beans, Cowitch and Madness Beans.
The bean seeds or legumes are used in many medicines. Legumes are rich in L-DOPA which is an amino acid. It is the precursor of Dopamine which is a brain neurotransmitter.
The beans are also calm inducing and boost testosterone levels in the males. Mucuna Pruriens legume helps in calming the mind. In comparison to many legumes, these beans contains higher levels of proteins. The beans are used in the treatment of snakebites.
The beans vine comes in two varieties. One is domestic and other grows in the wild. The vine is a nitrogen fixer in the soil and is thus planted to enhance the organic content of the soil and fertilise the soil.
Th wild variety bean shell which is velvety in texture is very harmful to skin touch. It gives the affected person acute itch and pain. This is caused by the mucuna protein which induces allergy.
I happen to spot the vines at few places in a forest near our home. I took the photos for reference.