Iresine persica Burm. f.
Perennial herb, frequently woody and suffruticose or growing in erect clumps, 0.3-1.5 m, branched from about the base with simple stems or the stems with long, ascending, sometimes intricate branches. Stem and branches terete, striate, ± densely whitish- or yellowish-tomentose or pannose, when dense the indumentum often appearing tufted. Leaves alternate, very variable in size and form, from narrowly linear to suborbicular, ±densely whitish- or yellowish tomentose but usually more thinly so and greener on the upper surface, margins plane or more or less involute (when strongly so the leaves frequently ± falcate-recurved), sessile or with a short and indistinct petiole or the latter rarely to c. 2 cm in robust plants. Flowers dioecious. Spikes sessile, cylindrical, dense and stout (up to c. 10 x 1 cm.), to slender and interrupted with lateral globose clusters of flowers and with some spikes apparently pedunculate by branch reduction; male plants always with more slender spikes (but plants with slender spikes may not be male) ; upper part of stem and branches leafless, the upper spikes thus forming terminal panicles; bracts 0.75-2.25 mm, broadly deltoid-ovate, hyaline, acute or obtuse with the obscure midrib ceasing below the apex, densely lanate throughout or only about the base or apex, persistent; bracteoles similar, also persistent. Female flowers with outer 2 tepals 2-3 mm, oblong-obovate to obovate-spathulate, lanate, acute to obtuse or apiculate at the tip, the yellowish midrib ceasing well below the apex; inner 3 slightly shorter, elliptic-oblong, ± densely lanate, acute, with a narrow green vitta along the midrib, which extends for about two-thirds the length of each tepal; style slender, distinct, with the two filiform, flexuose stigmas at least equalling it in length; filaments reduced, anthers absent. Male flowers smaller, the outer tepals 1.5-2.25 mm, ovate; filaments delicate, the anthers about equalling the perianth; ovary small, style very short, stigma rudimentary. Capsule 1-1. 5 mm, rotund, compressed. Seed 0.9-1.25 mm, round, slightly compressed, brown or black, shining and smooth or very faintly reticulate.