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FOC | Family List | FOC Vol. 7 | Cleomaceae | Gynandropsis

1. Gynandropsis gynandra (Linnaeus) Briquet, Annuaire Conserv. Jard. Bot. Genève. 17: 382. 1914.

羊角菜 yang jiao cai

Cleome gynandra Linnaeus, Sp. Pl. 1: 671. 1753; C. heterotricha Burch; C. pentaphylla Linnaeus; Gynandropsis heterotricha (Burch) Candolle; G. pentaphylla (Linnaeus) Candolle; G. sinica Miquel.

Herbs, annual, (0.2-)0.9-1.5 m tall. Stems simple or sparsely branched, glabrate to glandular pubescent. Petiole 3.5-4.5(-8) cm, glandular pubescent; leaflets 3 or 5; leaflet blades oblanceolate to rhombic, 2.5-4.5 × 1.2-2.5 cm, both surfaces glabrate to glandular pubescent, margin serrulate-denticulate, apex acute. Inflorescences 5-20 cm but 10-40 cm in fruit, 5-12-flowered; bracts 1-2.5 cm, 3-foliolate, petiolate. Pedicel purple, 0.8-1.5 cm, glabrous. Sepals green, lanceolate, 3.5-5 × 0.8-1.2 mm, persistent, glandular pubescent, base cuneate, margin entire. Petals purple to white, oblong to ovate, 7-14 × 3-4 mm, clawed. Stamens purple, 0.8-3 cm; filaments adnate to gynophore for 1/3-1/2 their length, diverging at anthesis; anthers green, 1-2 mm. Pistil 6-10 mm; style 1-1.2 mm. Fruit gynophore 1-1.4 cm, scars from filaments visible for 1/3-1/2 its length; capsule 4.5-9.5 cm × 3-4 mm, glandular pubescent. Seeds 10-20 per capsule, reddish brown to black, subspherical, 1.4-1.6 × 1-1.2 mm, rugose to tuberculate. Fl. (Apr-)May-Jul(-Oct), fr. Jun-Dec. 2n = 34, 60.

Roadsides, wastelands, fields, often dry areas; near sea level to 300(-800) m. Anhui, Chongqing, Fujian, Guangdong, Guangxi, Guizhou, Hainan, Hebei, Henan, Hubei, Hunan, Jiangsu, Jiangxi, Shandong, Taiwan, Yunnan, Zhejiang [Bhutan, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Vietnam; tropical Africa; introduced in Central, S North, and South America].

This species is often grown as an ornamental and cultivated as a potherb (see Waithaka & Chweya, Gynandropsis gynandra, a tropical leafy vegetable: its cultivation and utilization. F. A. O. Pl. Prod. Protect. Pap. 107. 1991; Chweya & Mnzava, Cat’s Whiskers: Cleome gynandra L. F. A. O. Pl. Prod. Protect. Pap. 1997). It is also used medicinally. The fresh plant has a peculiar odor that suggests burning Cannabis. The C4 photosynthetic pathway is reported from Gynandropsis gynandra (see Imbamba & Tieszen, Physiol. Pl. (Copenhagen) 39: 311-316. 1977).


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