Botanical Survey of India | Flora of India

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Cleome fimbriata Vicary in J. Asiat. Soc. Bengal 16: 1158. 1847 & in Ann. Nat. Hist. ser. 2, 1: 425. 1848. C. quinquenervia sensu Hook. f. & Thomson in Fl. Brit. India 1: 168. 1872 (non DC. 1824).

Herbs, annual or perennial, often woody at base, aromatic, under 60 cm high; branches rigid, terete, spreading, clothed with glandular and eglandular hairs. Leaves broadly ovate or suborbicular, broadly cordate to subcordate at base, obtuse or rounded and slightly apiculate at apex, 2 - 4 x 2 - 3.5 cm, with stalked glandular hairs along margins, palmately 5-nerved. Racemes few-flowered, lax; bracts subsessile, ovate, foliaceous. Flowers 6 - 7 cm across, yellow with purple or lilac veins; pedicels 5 - 6 mm long, elongating to 12 mm in fruits. Sepals ovate, 3 - 4 x 1.5 - 2 mm. Petals dimorphic, 6 - 8 x 1.5 - 2.5 mm, two of them lanceolate, the other two broadly ovate with a crested scale at junction of limb and claw, glandular at tip. Stamens 4, exserted. Ovary sessile; style ca 1.5 mm long, elongating to 2 - 4 mm, persistent in fruit. Capsules linear-oblong, acute at both ends, slightly falcate, 2.5 - 3.5 x 0.3 - 0.4 cm, clothed with glandular hairs; seeds many, granulate, ca 1 mm across, brownish, glabrous.

Fl. & Fr. Oct. - Nov.

Distrib. India: Kashmir.

Pakistan, Afghanistan, Iran and Iraq.

Notes. It is closely related to both C. quinquenervia DC. and C. dolichostyla Jafri sharing common characters such as leaf shape, indumentum, dimorphic appendiculate petals and superficial features of capsules. Often it is treated as a synonym of C. qumquenervia in the floras, but the capsules in the latter are oblong, much smaller in size (ca 15 x 4 mm) with blunt or rounded apex. Moreover, C. quinquenervia does not occur in Indian subcontinent. The length of style (ca 1.5 mm) distinguish C. fimbriata from C. dolichostyla (8 - 12 mm long), the latter common in Iran, Afghanistan and Pakistan only.

Shetty & Singh (Fl. Rajasthan 1: 81. 1988) include this based on a report by Nair et al.(in Proc. Raj. Acad. Sci. 8: 102. 1961) from Jhunjhunu District of Rajasthan. However, no specimen was seen.

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