Forest Burr
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Forest Burr
ative Photo: Thingnam Girija
Common name: Forest Burr, Creeping Cock's Comb • Hindi: नागदामिनी Nagadaminee, Undho bhurat, चिर्चिट्टा Chirchitta • Tamil: adai-otti, perunkotiveli, napikai, valiyakkotiveli • Malayalam: pu-pal-valli, wellia-codiveli • Telugu: erra utthareni, thella utthareni, yerri chithramoolam • Kannada: antupurale gida, naagadamani • Konkani: Sitya kurdi
Botanical name: Pupalia lappacea    Family: Amaranthaceae (Amaranth family)
Synonyms: Achyranthes lappacea

Forest Burr is a perennial herb, erect or prostrate and sprawling, 60-90 cm tall. Branches and leaves opposite, variously hairy. Leaves variable in shape and size, from narrowly ovate-elliptic to oblong or round, 2-12 x 1-6 cm, tapering to apiculate at the tip, shortly or more longly wedge-shaped at the base, narrowed to a stalk 2-25 mm long. Flower-spikes are at the end of the stem and branches, at first dense, elongating to as much as 50 cm in fruit. Inflorescences greyish-white, in racemes, the clusters alternate and well-spaced. hermaphrodite flowers mostly in ± stalkless clusters of 3, upper often solitary; bracteoles of hermaphrodite flowers broadly heart-shaped-ovate, 2.75-5 mm, prominent, sharply with a short sharp point with the percurrent midrib. Tepals oblong, 3.5-6 mm, hairless to ± hairy dorsally, 3-nerved, the lateral nerves of the 2 outer tepals strong throughout, joining the shortly excurrent midrib just below the tip. Spines of modified flowers hairless except sometimes near the base, yellowish to purple, 3-4 mm; 3-flowered clusters falling together to form a “burr” up to 2.5 cm in diameter. Filaments 2-3 mm. Style slender, 1.25 2 mm. The fluffy fruits are balled and used to filter milk etc.

Identification credit: Navendu Pāgé, Shaista Ahmad Photographed at Green Park City Forest, Delhi & Karighatta Hill, Karnataka.

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