Chinese Licorice
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Chinese Licorice
P Introduced Photo: Gurcharan Singh
Common name: Chinese Licorice
Botanical name: Glycyrrhiza pallidiflora    Family: Fabaceae (Pea family)

Chinese Licorice is a perennial herb with stem 1-1.5 m tall, striped, densely yel­low-brown scaly glandular dotted, nearly hairless. Leaves are 6-20 cm, 9-15-foliolate; leaf-stalk hairless, densely glandular dotted; leaflets lanceshaped or ovate-lanceshaped, 2-6 x 1.5-2 cm, hairless, densely scaly glan­dular dotted, base wedge-shaped, margin minutely toothed, tip tapering with mucro. Flower racemes are many flowered, oblong or spherical; axis shorter than leaves, densely brown glandular dotted and pu­bescent; bracts ovate-lanceshaped, 6-8 mm, membranous, glan­dular dotted. Calyx is bell-shaped, 4-5 mm, densely glandular dotted and sparsely velvet-hairy at base, lanceshapedly 5-toothed. Flowers are light purple, purple, or purple-red; standard ovate, 6-8 mm, base shortly clawed, tip rounded; wings 5-6 mm; keel shorter than wings. Pod is ovoid, 10-17 x 6-8 mm, rigidly spiny, tip abruptly tapering. Seeds 2, black, about 2 mm. Chinese Licorice is found in China, Mongolia and Russia at altitudes of 2600-3100 m. It is cultivated elsewhere for use in herbalism. Flowering: June-July.

Identification credit: Gurcharan Singh Photographed in cultivation in Herbal Garden, Srinagar, Kashmir.

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