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a genus of herbaceous plants of the family Commelinaceae. The stems are usually fleshy. The flowers are in axillary cymose inflorescences. The petals are often bright blue. There are approximately 180 species (according to other data, 230 species), distributed primarily in tropical and subtropical regions of both hemispheres. The USSR has one species, the dayflower (Commelina communis), which is native to Japan and China. It grows in the Far East and in some regions of Siberia, Ciscaucasia, and the Caucasus. It is a quarantine weed. The corolla consists of two large bright blue petals and one small pale-colored petal. The petals contain a blue dye that is suitable for coloring animal hides and the scaly coverings of fish (the plant is used for this purpose by the Nanais). Some species of Commelina are cultivated as ornamentals and as vegetables.