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Pakistan | Family List | Pakistan V. 204 | Chenopodiaceae | Salsola

10. Salsola griffithii (Bunge) Freitag & Khani in Pl. Syst. Evol. 155: 50. 1987; Freitag in Ali & Ghaffar, Pl. Life S Asia 84. 1991; Rilke in Rech.f., Fl. Iran. 172: 188. 1997; Rilke in Bibl. Bot. 149: 83. 1999. (Fig. 27, E).

Noaea griffithii Bunge in Mém. Acad. Imp. Sci. St. Pétersbourg, sér.7, Sci. Math. 4, 11: 22. 1862; Boiss., Fl. Or. 4: 966. 1879; Ulbr. in Engl. & Prantl, Nat. Pflanzenfam. ed. 2, 16c: 574. 1934.

Divaricately branched, spinescent subshrub or small shrub up to 0.5(0.7)m, greyish with a dense hispid indumentum, more rarely glabrous and blue-green in colour, with very conspicuous wool-like tufts of axillary hairs surpassed by 1-3 spines, annual branches green with narrow whitish ridges, later turning whitish, finally grey or greyish-brown, fissured, stem up to 15(20) mm thick. Leaves spreading to recurved, rigid, 4-10 x 1.2-1.5 mm, semi-terete, spine 1-1,5 mm long. Flowers in loose spikes. Bracts and bracteoles leaf-like, but with shorter blade (3-8 and 2-6 mm ), recurved and exposing the axillary flower. Tepals narrow ovate to ligulate, 2.5-4 mm long, the outer 1.3-1.5 mm wide, 3-5-veined, the inner 1-3-veined, midrib reaching the upper half of tepal and often shortly protruding into a short mucro, transverse line at 1/5-1/4, the back and margins usually densely papillose. Anthers 1.8-2.8 mm long, including the oblong, 0.3-0.6 mm long appendage, divided for 1/2; filaments 2.5-3.5 mm long; disc robust, 0.4-0.5 mm wide, slightly lobed, with glandular surface. Style large, 0.9-1.6 mm long, stigmas band-shaped, 0.9-2 mm long, moderately recurved, inner surface densely and shortly papillose. Fruiting perianth 6-8(10) mm diam., wings coriaceous, without prominent veins, hispid, the 2 inner distinctly narrower but about as long as the outer, linear to spathulate; lobes above the wings in lower part thickened, horizontally incurved, in upper part erect, forming a stiff column c. 1 mm wide, often dilated toward the apex, tepals below the wings hardened, coalescent, at base rounded, without distinct grooves. Utricle horizontal.

Fl. Per.: May-June.

Holotype: [Afghanistan, SE of Kandahar] Dair Haj [Deh-i Haji], Griffith J. 581 [= H.E.A.C. 1814] (P!), iso-(K!).

Obligate psammophyte, not rare on mobile and semi-stabilized sand dunes and deep sand fields in N and C Baluchistan from 600-1600 m. With its stiff, spine-tipped leaves the species resembles S. tragus and Cornulaca monacantha. From the former it differs by its shrubby habit, and from the later by the presence of a short green leave blade at base of the spines. By that, it is well protected from browsing by sheep, goat and even camels, and from being collected for firewood; Distribution: SE Iran, S Afghanistan and Pakistan (Baluchistan).


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