Botanical Name – Houttuynia cordata
Chinese Name – YU XING CAO
English Name – Chameleon plant
Houttuynia cordata, commonly known as fish mint, fish leaf, rainbow plant, chameleon plant, heart leaf, fish wort, Chinese lizard tail, or bishop’s weed, is one of two species in the genus Houttuynia (the other being H. emeiensis). It is a flowering plant native to Southeast Asia. It grows in moist, shady locations.
Houttuynia cordata is a herbaceous perennial plant that can grow to 0.6–1 metre, spreading up to 1 metre.
It is commonly grown as a leaf vegetable, and is used as a fresh herbal garnish. The leaf has an unusual taste that is often described as ‘fishy’ (earning it the nickname “fish mint”), so it is not enjoyed as universally as basil, mint, or other more commonly used herbs.