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This plant is growing in one of my pots. And the leaves looks beautiful. I wonder of this plat is worth planting separately or I should rather pull it out and throw it away. (like is it bad or like a normal plant?) The other hardy stem is that of lemon plant.

Location is Delhi

image of plant to be identified

3 Answers 3

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That has a very close resemblance to the peanuts that squirrels plant in my yard in the US. If I'm right, you can confirm this by by gently removing the soil from near the central stem to unearth the actual peanut. Please let me know if raw peanuts are unavailable in your area and I'll delete this answer.

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  • I will check that tomorrow.
    – 4-K
    Commented Apr 28, 2021 at 17:58
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It's almost certainly a legume, a member of the plant family Fabaceae. Legumes have a certain look to them that, while difficult to describe, is quite easy to recognize once you get an eye for it. However, I don't think it's a peanut plant (Arachis hypogaea). The leaflet of a peanut comes to a point, whereas the leaflets of your volunteer are slightly indented at the tip. Peanut leaflets are widest in the middle, whereas the leaflets of your plant are widest closest to the tip. In technical botanical terms, peanut leaflets are elliptical; your plant's leaflets are obovate with indented tips, or obcordate.

Compare the leaflets on your plant to this peanut plant: enter image description here (image source)

After looking through the list of legumes (members of the plant family Fabaceae) on eFlora of India, I couldn't find an exact match. The two that looked closest, black locust (Robinia pseudoacacia) and Calpurnia aurea, both have odd-pinnnate leaves, whereas yours has even-pinnate leaves. (Odd-pinnate means the leaf has an odd number of leaflets, and it ends with a single leaflet at the tip. Even-pinnate means it has an even number of leaflets, so the leaf ends with a pair of leaflets.) But, it looks like you can submit the photo of your plant to that site and get some identification help.

Plants that "volunteer" like this are often weeds. However, if you have a spare pot and you're feeling adventurous, it should be pretty safe to re-pot it. Don't plant it in the ground until you know what it is, just in case it's a weed that can spread easily by roots. Keep it out of direct sunlight for a week or so, to protect it from drying out while it re-establishes its root system. Don't be surprised if it completely wilts and looks absolutely dead within the first hour; legumes can be "drama queens" when they get stressed, but they're pretty good at recovering.

Watch out for the plant to flower. Once it blooms, you may be able to identify it from the flower. As it grows, it may also give you additional clues, like by developing a woody stem, or growing spines or hair on the stem.

If you haven't identified it by the time the flower fades, it's probably a good idea to remove the spent blossoms so they don't turn into seeds. Until you know what it is, don't let it reproduce. Otherwise, several years from now you could have a large infestation of hundreds or thousands of these plants, and be saying to yourself, "If only I had killed that first weed when I had the chance."

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  • Thank you. I will check those links.
    – 4-K
    Commented Apr 28, 2021 at 18:03
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I'm not 100% sure, but it could be something like a black locust, by the look of the leaves, and the fact that it has thorns. I think black locusts tend to have more leaflets on each leaf, though.

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