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Published In: Species Plantarum 1: 503. 1753. (1 May 1753) (Sp. Pl.) Name publication detailView in BotanicusView in Biodiversity Heritage Library

Project Name Data (Last Modified On 6/2/2011)
Acceptance : Accepted
Project Data     (Last Modified On 6/3/2011)
Type: Type: Not precisely designated. Burtt & Lewis denoted the specimen of C. aculeata in the Hort. Cliff. Herb. (BM) as the type of C. spinosa L.
Distribution: Distribution: S. Europe eastward to Australia.
Comment/Acknowledgements: Camel and goats graze on it and the fruits and buds sometimes pickled.

A very variable species and the status of various varieties described under it, from time to time, is very doubtful. However, in Sind, where the plants were observed in field, two forms, one prostrate or sprawling with larger leaves and the other with erect habit and smaller elliptical leaves, were present. How far these habits are constant is still to be worked out.

Illustration: Capparis spinosa L. (Illustration)
Map Location: A-7 Chitral Dist.: Shuski nullah, 1800 m., Toppin s.n. (K); Gilgit, Manggah nala, 2100-2400 m., Thornley, 41 (BM) ; B-6. Peshawar, Vicary s.n. (K), Deane s.n. (K) ; B-8 Skardu, c. 2400 m., Clarke 30039 A (K) ; B-9 Baltistan, Winterbottom s.n. (K), Ludlow 275 (BM); C-7 Rawalpindi, R. R. Stewart s.n. (K); Aitchison 177 (K) ; C-7 Salt Range, Fleming 90 (K) ; Sind, hills, Stoeks 1201 (K), 577 (K) ; D-4 Quetta, Brewery, 1800 m., under shades in dry nullah, not common, H. Crookshank, 97 (K) ; Pil rift, Lace, 3938 (K) : D-5 Loralai, limestone hills, scattered small shrubs, ,Jafri & Akbar 2286 (KUH) ; about 19 miles from Duki on way to Loralai, M. Qaiser & A. Ghafoor 1501 (KUH) ; F-5 Khairpur, borders of cult. fields, bushes about 3 ft. tall, 5.9.57, Jafri 2421 (E, KUH) ; G-2 about 30 miles from Mand on way to Suntsar, A. Ghafoor & M. Qaiser 252 (KUH) ; G-4 Karachi near Kalapul 31.8.69, Abrar Hussain (KUH) ; G-5 Tandojam, common in dried ditches, plants sprawling with elongated branches and obovate leaves, 2.7.57, Jafri 2406 (E, KUH).


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Diffuse shrub, prostrate or hanging, glabrous or pubescent. Leaves very variable in size and shape with a length/breadth ratio of 1-1.7, usually about one and a half times as long as broad, ovate, obovate, orbicular to elliptic, 1-4 cm long, 1-3.5 cm broad, entire, acute, obtuse, retuse or slightly acuminate; apex mostly spine-tipped; petiole up to 4 mm long; stipules of 2 hooked rarely straight, brown or yellow coloured spines. Flowers axillary and solitary, 2-5 cm across, sub-irregular, handsome, whitish; pedicels 2-6 (-9) cm long, becoming thickened in fruit. Sepals subequal, posterior sepal not galeate, 1-2 cm long, broadest at the base and only 3-4.5 mm deep near the apex. Petals 1.5-3 cm long, 0.6-2 cm broad, obovate-cuneate, exceeding the sepals. Stamens indefinite, exceed¬ing the petals, spreading; anthers 1-2.5 mm long. Fruit 1.5-4.5 cm long, 1-1.8 cm broad, ellipsoid or oblong—obovate, often slightly ribbed, red when ripe, often splitting into 4 parts from the apex when dried and pressed; gynophore 3-7 cm long; seeds many, 2-3 mm in diam., brown.
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