Showy Rattlepod is a genus of flowering plants in the legume family Fabaceae commonly known as rattlepods. The genus includes about 500 species of herbaceous plants and shrubs. Africa is the continent with the majority of Crotalaria
species (approximately 400 species), which are mainly found in damp grassland, especially in floodplains, depressions and along edges of swamps and rivers, but also in deciduous bush land, roadsides and fields.
Showy Rattlepod is a perennial shrub, 1-1.5 m tall. It sports many branches covered with velvety hairs. Oblong leaves are 4-9 cm long, with a wedge-shaped base. Numerous large yellow flowers occur in erect racemes, 15-30 cm long, at the end of branches. Flowers are 2.5 cm across, bright yellow, with purple tinge. The "standard" petal is circular. The flower differs from Crotalaria retusa in its large bracts and hairless sepal tube. It is also found in the Western Ghats and lower Himalayas, at altitudes of 100-1500 m. Flowering: October-March.
It is a highly medicinal plant. The leaves, branches and roots can be used as a cooling medicine. Plant juice is useful for treatments of gout, eczema, hydrophobia, pain and swellings, wounds and cuts, infection, kidney pain, abdominal problems, rheumatism and joint pain in traditional medicine system.