This drab-looking climber is very common in mangroves and coastal areas and is extremely widespread throughout Southeast Asia and Far North Queensland. Although it bears the specific epithet ‘trifoliata’, the pinnate leaves have 5 leaflets.
The flowers are borne on spikes and are whitish or light purple.
This plant has been known to be used as fish poison, a fact that is known by many cultures in Southeast Asia and also in Australia. Bruised plant material can be placed in the water to stun fish, and the poison apparently does not affect the edibility of the fish.