Gouania tiliifolia is a robust liana, which climbs trees with its tendrils. The leaves are pale green, heart-shaped, and grow along the stems. The small yellowish flowers are grouped in spikes and the fruit have three rounded thick wings.
This species grows as well in the upland to lowland areas, as well as on the coast. It uses trees as a support and can cover a large area of the canopy. The fruit are scattered by wind and birds. It is very rare to find seedlings in the wild. This liana can be propagated by seeds and cuttings in the nursery.
The species is classified as ‘Critically Endangered’ on the IUCN Red List. G. tiliifolia is on the list of plants selected for the Rare Plants Conservation Project in Mauritius. The population is declining due to habitat loss and the invasion of exotic species.
In the past, it has been claimed that the wood of this liana was used to make the wheels of carts, hence its vernacular name.
The liana is known to cure diseases such as gonorrhea, hematuria and dropsy.