Cleghorn Caper
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Cleghorn Caper
ative Photo: Siddarth Machado
Common name: Cleghorn Caper
Botanical name: Capparis cleghornii    Family: Capparaceae (Caper family)

Cleghorn Caper is a climbing shrub, about 2 m high; twigs purplish, flagellate, rusty-velvet-hairy, densely armed with sharp recurved thorns. It is named for Hugh Francis Clarke Cleghorn who is considered the father of scientific forestry in India. Leaves are alternate, elliptic or obovate, pointed at base, abruptly blunt-tapering at tip, 3.5-10 x 2-5 cm, subleathery, pinkish when tender, dull greenish when dry; lateral nerves 4-6 pairs with obscure reticulations; leaf-stalks 6-10 mm long. Flowers are showy, white, purple on ageing, to 5 x 3.5 -4.5 cm, in at branch-ends 6-10 flowered corymbs, rarely solitary, in leaf-axils or conferted in subat branch-ends shoots. Flower-stalks are 2.5-4 cm long, velvet-hairy; buds woolly. Sepals are nearly equal, concave, 10-12 x 7-8 cm, velvet-hairy outside, hairless inside. Petals are obovate or oblong, unequal; upper pair 2.2-2.5 x 1-1.2 cm; lower pair 1.6-1.8 x 1.2-1.4 cm. Receptacle is 2.5-3 mm across. Stamens are prominent in a protruding bunch of 65-80, white turning pink or scarlet; filaments 2.5-2.8 cm long. Fruits are borne on slender stalks, ovoid or subspherical, umbonate, 6-8.5 cm long, dark purplish to violet. Cleghorn Caper is found in

Identification credit: Siddarth Machado Photographed in Sakleshpur, Karnataka.

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