SPECIES DESCRIPTION
FRANKENIA HIRSUTA

Family and Genus:- See- FRANKENIACEAE

Common Names:- Powdery or annual sea-heath.

Homotypic Synonyms:- Frankenia laevis subsp. hirsuta, Frankenia laevis var.
hirsuta.

Meaning:- Frankenia (L) For John Frankenius (1590-1661), Swedish botanist.
                  Hirsuta (L) With rough hairs, covered in long hairs.

General description:- Procumbent, trailing perennial herb or subshrub

Stems:-
1) Up to 40 cm, procumbent, much-branched, mat-forming, densely puberulent or 
   pubescent at least near apex.

Leaves:-
1) Tiny, 2-8 mm, decussate, linear-oblong, with revolute margins, densely 
    puberulent at least beneath.

Flowers:-
1) Confined to conspicuous, dense corymbiform clusters terminal on the main
    stems and branches.
2) Calyx, 35-5 mm, sparsely puberulent to densely pubescent,
    narrowly cylindrical, ribbed.
3) Petals, 4-6 mm, pale purplish or white.

Fruit:-
1) Capsule, 3-angled, 2.5-3 mm. Enclosed in the when ripe calyx.

Key features:-
1) Flowers, confined to dense corymbiform clusters which are terminal on the main   
    stems or branches.

Click here for a glossary of terms used.

Habitat:- Rocky and sandy coastal habitats, also on small islands. 0-50 m,
occasionally open dry shrubby vegetation and ruderal habitats some distance inland
up to 200 m.

Distribution:- Common in the Aegean area, scattered in W Greece. - Widespread
in the Mediterranean region to Palastine and eastwards to Iran. On Crete mainly
central and to the east.

Flowering time:- Apr-July.

Photos by:- Steve Lenton