Bulbous Star of Bethlehem
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Bulbous Star of Bethlehem
P Native Photo: Ashutosh Sharma
Common name: Bulbous Star of Bethlehem
Botanical name: Gagea bulbifera    Family: Liliaceae (Lily family)
Synonyms: Gagea bulbifera var. nuda,

Bulbous Star of Bethlehem is a plant 4-6 cm tall. Bulb is ovoid, 3-6 mm in diameter, tunic brown, surrounded by numerous roots. Stem is gray-white velvet-hairy or becoming hairless in fruit. Leaves arise from base and stem. Basal leaves are usually 2, thread-like, 3-7 cm x 0.5-0.8 mm, stem leaves 2 or 3-5. Flowers are borne in 2-4-flowered racemose. Tepals are yellow above, green below, narrowly oblong or linear-spoon-shaped, 6-9 x 1.5-2 mm. Stamens are 4-7 mm. Style is about 2 x as long as ovary. Capsules are oblong, 3-angled, 4-6 x 2-3 mm, seeds flat. Bulbous Star of Bethlehem is found in Steppes on hillsides, dry grassy slopes, in Western Himalaya, Xinjiang, Kazakhstan, Russia, at altitudes of 600-1200 m. Flowering: April.

Identification credit: Ashutosh Sharma, D.S. Rawat Photographed in Kullu District, Himachal Pradesh.

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