Weedy shrub or small tree that springs up ubiquitously in abandoned chagras (manioc gardens).  The flowering of the llunchik in July marks the season called lunchij verano.  Lunchij verano is the first appearance of the dry season.  Following lunchij verano there will still be some heavy rains before the true dry season sets in during September and October.    Because poles cut from lunchij sprout when planted they can be used as fence posts.

Asteraceae: Vemonanthura patens

Kichwa: llunchik

Llunchij in bloom.  Photo: Tod Swanson

Llunchik leaves.   Photo: Tod Swanson

Tod Swanson interview with Clara Santi on llunchik.