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Chinese Plant Names | Family List | Caryophyllaceae | Silene

74. Silene caespitella F. N. Williams, J. Linn. Soc., Bot. 38: 403. 1909.

丛生蝇子草 cong sheng ying zi cao

Description from Flora of China

Melandrium neocaespitosum Y. W. Tsui ex L. H. Zhou; M. xainzaense L. H. Zhou; Silene maheshwarii Bocquet.

Plants 13--40(--60) cm tall. Roots robust, vertical, lignified. Stems caespitose, erect, green, shortly retrorse pubescent throughout. Basal and proximal cauline leaves green on both surfaces, linear, 4--7(--10) cm × 2--5 mm, margin ciliate, midvein prominent, hairy only at veins or glabrous, base narrow, apex acute; distal leaves 3 or 4 pairs, sessile, linear, gradually reduced upward. Flowers up to 20, in an irregular thyrsoid with long- and shortly stalked, (1--)3--5-flowered cymules, sharply nutant, becoming erect in late anthesis. Pedicel short. Calyx narrowly cylindric-campanulate, soon becoming broader as capsule swells, 5--7 × 2.5--3 mm, rounded at base, open at apex, weakly hairy, veins dark green to blackish red; teeth triangular, ca. 2.5 mm, margin membranous, ciliate, apex acute. Androgynophore ca. 1 mm, sparsely villous. Petals exserted 1--2 mm beyond calyx, dark red, rarely greenish white; claws cuneate, ca. 6 mm, glabrous at base, conspicuously auriculate (2.5--3 mm wide at apex); auricles ciliate; limb 1--2 mm, shallowly bifid, usually with small lateral lobes; coronal scales small. Stamens included. Styles included. Capsule globose, ca. 8 mm, slightly longer than calyx. Seeds gray, globose-reniform, ca. 0.8 mm, minutely tuberculate. Fl. Jun--Jul, fr. Aug--Sep.

This species is closely related to Silene nepalensis, from which it differs in its linear leaves and smaller flowers. Silene caespitella is a very homogeneous species throughout its range.

Alpine forests, alpine meadows; 2500--5100 m. SE Qinghai, SW and W Sichuan, S and SE Xizang [Bhutan, Kashmir].


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