4. Galium asperuloides Edgeworth, Trans. Linn. Soc. London. 20: 61. 1846.
车叶葎 che ye lü
Herbs, perennial, emerging from filiform reddish rhizomes. Stems weak but generally erect, 10-45 cm tall, 4-angled, glabrous and smooth, except hispidulous at nodes. Middle stem leaves and leaflike stipules in whorls of (6 or)7 or 8, subsessile to very shortly petiolate; blade drying papery or membranous, remaining green, elliptic to narrowly oblong-oblanceolate or lanceolate, (10-)20-50(-60) × 3-13 mm, length/breadth index mostly 3.5-4.5, glabrescent, base acute or cuneate, midrib smooth or rarely retrorsely aculeolate, margins and upper leaf side with antrorse microhairs, apex obtuse or rounded and abruptly apiculate; vein 1. Inflorescences terminal and sometimes in axils of upper leaves with few- to several-flowered cymes; axes glabrous, smooth; bracts none or few, 1-2 mm; pedicels 0.5-5 mm. Ovary ovoid, 0.5-0.8 mm, with uncinate trichomes. Corolla white or light greenish, rotate, 2.5-3.8 mm in diam., lobed for 3/4 or more; lobes 4, ovate, acute. Mericarps ellipsoid, 1.8-2.5 mm, with dense uncinate trichomes 0.6-0.8 mm, on fruiting pedicels elongating to 10 mm. Fl. Apr-Aug, fr. May-Sep.
Forests on mountain slopes, thickets, ditch sides, along rivers, meadows; 1500-2800 m. Expected in Xizang [Afghanistan, India, Kashmir, Pakistan].
Galium asperuloides was previously circumscribed more broadly to include as subspecies plants treated here as G. hoffmeisteri. The specific status of the latter is well justified (Ehrendorfer et al., Fl. Iranica 176: 193-194. 2005; see comments and differential characters under that species). When the two taxa are classified as one species, the "typical" plants have to be called G. asperuloides subsp. asperuloides. Vegetative plants are very similar to G. odoratum. Together with G. echinocarpum from Taiwan and others they constitute G. sect. Hylaea.