Albersia deflexa (L.) Fourr.
Perennial herb, prostrate to somewhat ascending, (8-) 12-45 (-80) cm; stem slender to rather stout, usually much-branched from the base upwards, ± angular, green or reddish, glabrous below but usually increasingly furnished from well below the middle upwards with yellowish, flexuose or crisped multicellular hairs. Leaves moderately to ± densely furnished on the margins and lower surface (especially of the principal veins) with similar multicellular hairs, long-petiolate (petioles c. 6-25 mm but rarely if ever exceeding the lamina), lamina c. 1-4.5 x 0.5-2.5 cm, broadly ovate to lanceolate (most commonly rhomboid-ovate), subtruncate to shortly cuneate at the base, subacute to obtuse and sometimes shallowly retuse at the mucronulate apex. Flowers green, in slender and lax to stout and dense terminal and axillary spikes c. 2-10 cm long and 5-12 mm wide, the terminal spike not rarely with rather short, stout branches and the lowest inflorescences of dense subglobose clusters to c. 1 cm in diameter; male and female flowers intermixed, the male generally rather few. Bracts and bracteoles deltoid-ovate to ovate-lanceolate, pale-membranous with a shortly percurrent greenish midrib; bracteoles usually about half the length of the perianth. Perianth segments 2-3, (1.2-) 1.5-.2 mm long, linear-to oblong-spathulate, obtuse to subacute, male and female similar or the male slightly more acute, pale-membranous with the thin to thick green midrib excurrent in a short, paler mucro. Stigmas 2-3, pale, slender, flexuose. Capsule ellipsoid, sometimes constricted above, 1.75-3 mm, obviously exceeding the perianth, scarcely compressed, smooth, indehiscent or irregularly rupturing at maturity. Seeds compressed-ellipsoid, c. 1-1.2 x 0.7-0.8 mm, black, shining and almost smooth, with a duller, slightly roughened border.
Type: Cultivated material from Uppsala Botanic Garden, Linnean specimen 1117/18, as Amaranthus scandens (LINN, holotype!).
Distribution: Probably a native of temperate S. America (Argentina, Uruguay, Chile, S. Brazil), occurring as a weed in the eastern U.S.A. and California, Mexico etc., also widely naturalised in S. Europe, Mediterranean N. Africa, Macaronesia, tropical Africa (Kenya, Lesotho, Mauritius etc.), and in Asia from Turkey to Middle Asia (Pamir-Alai) and Japan. In Pakistan so far restricted to a small area in the mid-West, ascending to at least 1500 m.