Fern Asparagus
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Fern Asparagus
ative Photo: Krishan Lal
Common name: Fern Asparagus • Hindi: chiriya-kanda, sahasimuli, sharanoi • Nepali: बन कुरीलो Ban kurilo • Sanskrit: satavari
Botanical name: Asparagus filicinus    Family: Asparagaceae (Asparagus family)

Fern Asparagus an erect herb with a short rhizome with fleshy swollen fasciculate roots up to 120 cm, hairless, grooved, ridged. Stem is erect, herbaceous, unarmed. False leaves (Cladodes) occur in whorls 4-6, linear, sickle-shaped, 3-15 x 0.6-1 mm, flat. Flowers of both sexes solitary or paired, arise in the axil of cladode, in the middle or upper part of the stem. Flower-stalks are slender, 1-2 cm, articulate, lower part slightly exceeding the upper part. Male flowers: perianth white, creamy or greenish, 2.5-3.5 mm. Filaments 1.5-2.0 mm, free, anthers 0.5-1.0 mm. Female flower: perianth 2 mm. Ovary 0.8-2.0 mm, style c. 0.2 mm, trilobed. Berry deep red-black, 5-6 mm in diameter. Fern Asparagus is found in Pakistan, Himalayas, from Kashmir to Bhutan, China, Myanmar and Thailand, at altitudes of 1200--3000 m. Flowering: May-July.

Identification credit: Krishan Lal
Photographed in Chor, Sirmaur Distt, Himachal Pradesh.
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