SHAHINA A. GHAZANFAR & YASIN J. NASIR
Cerastium inflatum Link
Perennial, (6-) 10-15 cm with dichotomous or divaricate branching stems densely pilose, often glandular. Leaves 10-35 x 2-10 mm, pilose, oblong-lanceolate, apex obtuse, base sessile. Bracts herbaceous. Inflorescence a lax or condensed cyme. Pedicel as long as or shorter than the calyx, densely pilose. Calyx somewhat inflated in fruit. Sepals 8-12 mm, ovate-lanceolate, acute, glandular-pilose, margin scarious. Petals white, as long as or shorter than the sepals, bilobed. Capsule 18-20 mm, about twice the length of the sepals, teeth flat. Seeds c. 1 mm, subreniform, with low rounded tubercles.
Fl. Per.: March-April.
Type: Described from Spain, Hb. Linn. 603/11 (LINN).
Distribution. S. Europe, N.W. Africa, Greece, Cyprus, W. Syria, Caucasia, Iran, Turkestan, Pakistan.
Subsp. inflatum (Link) Cullen (Cerastium inflatum Link) is recognised with laxer cymes and a. much inflated calyx in fruit. Since many intermediates are found in our species, I have kept them all under C. dichotomum.
Easily distinguished by its dichotomous branching and long exserted capsules. Found in wheat fields and pastures.