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Pakistan | Family List | Brassicaceae

Lepidium Linn., Sp. Pl. 643. 1753. Gen. Pl. ed.5:291.1754; Benth.& Hook. f., l.c. 87; Boiss., l.c. 353; A.Thellung in Mitt. Bot.Mus.Univ. Zurich,28:1-340.1906; Schulz in Engl. & Prantl, l.c. 407; Busch in Kom., l.c. 501 (partly) ; Hedge in Davis, l. c. 279; in Rech.f., l.c. 63.

Lepidium pinnatifidum
Illustration

Credit: Shaukat & Azmat

Annual to perennial herbs, sometimes woody below, often much branched, glabrous or hairy with usually simple hairs; branches often apparently dichoto¬mous. Leaves usually linear or elliptic, entire, toothed or pinnatifid; lower often stalked; upper sessile or sub-sessile. Racemes corymbose, ebracteate, often dense. Flowers small, white, rarely yellowish or pinkish, pedicellate. Sepals 4, short, subequal, oblong, obtuse, glabrous, often green with white margin; inner slightly broad but not saccate at the base. Petals 4, small, linear to spathulate, sometimes shorter than the sepals, rarely absent or rudimentary. Stamens 6, or by abortion 4 or 2; filaments simple; anthers short, ovoid or suborbicular, obtuse. Nectar glands usually fragmentary, minute, present between the stamen bases. Ovary flat, elliptic with generally two pendulous ovules; style short or absent; stigma capitate, often subretuse, usually subsessile or sessile in fruit. Siliculae ovate, obovate, orbicular or broadly elliptic, apex often ± notched, laterally flattened, dehiscent (rarely subdehiscent), bilocular; valves usually strongly keeled, often slightly winged towards the apex; septum narrowly elliptic, membranous, not veined; seeds generally one in each locule, ± ovate (often oblique), brown; radicle incumbent or obliquely so.

About 150 species of nearly cosmopolitan distribution; only 9 species known from our area.


1 Pedicel often 2-3 mm long in fruit, thickened and appressed   Lepidium aucheri
+ Pedicel often 4-8 mm long in fruit, neither thickened nor appressed (rarely subappressed.)   (2)
       
2 (1) Siliculae often deeply notched at the apex, usually 5-6 mm long   Lepidium sativum
+ Siliculae slightly or obscurely notched at the apex, usually 2-3 mm long   (3)
       
3 (2) Annual or biennial   (4)
+ Perennial   (8)
       
4 (3) Leaves dimorphic; lower and basal bipinnatisect; upper ovate cordate, entire   Lepidium perfoliatum
+ Leaves not dimorphic, pinnatifid, dentate to linear   (5)
       
5 (4) Racemes ± capitate in fruit, not more than 3 cm long   Lepidium capitatum
+ Racemes elongated, 5-10 cm long in fruit   (6)
       
6 (5) Petals longer than the sepals; leaves bristly or ciliate   Lepidium virginicum
+ Petals shorter than the sepals or absent; leaves usually glabrous or with short, usually capitate hairs   (7)
       
7 (6) Stem usually single, and with larger leaves below and a crown of branches above; upper cauline leaves oblanceolate-spathulate, usually entire; petals 1/2-2/3 as long as the sepals (sometimes 0) ; siliculae with entire or rarely slightly emarginate apex   Lepidium pinnatifidum
+ Stem usually branched all over and often with similar leaves; upper cauline leaves pinnatipartite (or distantly toothed) to linear; petals absent, or if present rudi-mentary; siliculae distinctly notched at the apex   Lepidium apetalum
       
8 (3) Stem papillose; mature siliculae conspicuously reticulate-alveolate; inflorescence 15-20-flowered   Lepidium cartilagineum
+ Stem glabrous; mature siliculae smooth or faintly reticulate; inflorescence 30-50-flowered   Lepidium latifolium

Lower Taxa

Related Synonym(s):


 

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