SILENE FUSCATA

Family:- CARYOPHYLLACEAE/Sect. ATOCION

Common Names:- None

Synonyms:- None

Meaning:- Silene (Gr) A name used by the Greek philosopher Theophrastus for
catchfly.
                  Fuscata (L) Somewhat dusky-brown 
                
General description:- Annual, often lacking a leaf rosette.

Stems:-
1) 10-45 cm, simple erect or branched, not rigid, rather stout, ribbed or angled,  
     pubescent with patent, stout, twisted hairs.

Leaves:-
1) Lower, oblong-lanceolate, undulate, sparsely hispid or subglabrous.

Flowers:-
1) Inflorescence, several- to many-flowered, rather densely cymose-paniculate.
2) Calyx, 10-14 mm, clavate in fruit, glandular-pubescent, usually reddish.
3) Calyx-teeth, ovate, obtuse.
4) Petals, deep pink.

Fruit:-
1) Capsule, 4-5 mm, broadly ovoid, firm.
2) Carpophore, 45-7 mm, glabrous.
3) Seeds, 0.8-1.0 mm, reniform; with concave sides, obtusely tuberculate, blackish.


Key features:-
1) Carpophore 45-7 mm.
2) Inflorescence dense.

Habitat:- FalIow fields and nutrient-rich ruderal habitats in coastal areas. 0-50 m.

Distribution:- Currently known from only two collections in Greece, Crete and
Kerkira, so perhaps only casual. - Scattered in the Mediterranean region, mainly in
the south, from S Spain to Cyprus and Palestine.

Flowering time:- Feb-Apr.

Photos by:- Francesco Russo
SPECIES DESCRIPTION
GLOSSARY OF TERMS USED

Anthophore. A stalk-like extension of the receptacle on which the pistil and corolla
are borne.

Calyx:- A collective name for the sepals - the outer whorl of organs in most flowers.
Calyx-teeth:- Tip of a calyx lobe or division.
Capsule:- Dry fruit that opens when ripe. splitting from the apex to the base into
separate segments known as valves.
Carpophore:- The fruit bearing stalk  A prolongation of the receptacle or floral axis
bearing the carpels or ovary.
Cauline:- Borne on the stem, of the stem.
Clavate:- Club-shaped, thickened towards the apex.
Cymose:- An inflorescence in which the main-axis and lateral branches are
repeated, terminated by a flower.

Glabrous:- Without hairs, hairless.
Glandular:- Covered with glands - often seen as tiny dots.
Glandular-pubescent:- Hairs tipped with small glands that secrete oil, etc.

Hispid:- With stiff bristly hairs.

Inflorescence:- The flowering branch or branches, flowers and bracts above the
uppermost leaves on a stem.

Lanceolate:- Lance-shaped: more or less elliptical but broadest below the middle.
Linear:- Narrow and parallel-sided. Narrow and much longer than wide, with parallel
margins.

Oblong-Lanceolate:- Rectangular with rounded ends to lance-shaped.:
Obtuse:- Blunt, not pointed, ending in an angle of between 90 - 180.
Obtusely Tuberculate:- With small, blunt, wart-like projections.
Ovate:- Broad and rounded at the base and tapering toward the end.
Ovoid:- Egg-shaped.

Paniculate:- Arranged or branched in the manner of panicles; borne in panicles.
Patent:- Spreading.
Pedicel:- The stalk of an individual flower.
Petal:- The inner perianth segments when they clearly differ from the outer.
Pubescent:- Covered with fine short soft hairs, downy.

Reniform:- Kidney-shaped, shaped like a kidney.
Rosette:- A circular arrangement of leaves usually sitting near the soil.

Sepal:- A member of the outer perianth whorl in most flowers. The sepals
collectively make up the calyx.
Subglabrous:- Almost hairless.

Undulate:- With a wavy margin curving up and down.
 
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