Large-Petal Caper
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Large-Petal Caper
P Native Photo: Anurag Sharma
Common name: Large-Petal Caper
Botanical name: Capparis grandiflora    Family: Capparaceae (Caper family)
Synonyms: Capparis pyrifolia Wight & Arn.

Large-Petal Caper is an erect or low, scrambling and spreading shrub, 0.5-2 m high; twigs coarsely star-shaped-velvet-hairy; spines copious, 2-3 mm long, recurved; cataphylls absent. Leaves are elliptic-ovate to nearly round, subheart-shaped to rounded at base, pointed or blunt-mucronate at tip, 1.5-3.5 x 1.2-2 cm, subleathery, shining, hairless above, velvet-hairy beneath; midnerve sunken; lateral nerves 3 or 4 pairs; leaf-stalks 1.5-3 mm. Flowers are borne solitary, in leaf-axils, showy, 4 - 5 cm across, faintly fragrant. white with orange throat; flower-stalks 1 - 1.5 cm long. finely velvet-hairy. Sepals subequal, 1.2-1.8 cm x 5-8 mm, woolly; outer pair boat-shaped, hairless outside and hairy inside towards margins; inner pair ovate to obovate, hairy outside, hairless inside. Petals are obovate-triangular, nearly flat, 2.5-3 x 0.9-1.4 cm, white, hairless. Torus 1.5-2 mm wide. Stamens 67-101, exceeding gynoecium; filaments white; anthers blue to pinkish. Gynophore 2 - 2.5 cm, hairless; ovary beaked, hairless, 4-5-furrowed, oblong to ovoid-cylindric, 6 - 8 x 1.2 mm; stigma finely velvet-hairy, cushion-shaped, 1.5 - 2 mm across; placentae 4 - 5. Fruits ellipsoid or ovoid, beaked, 5 - 7.5 x 2.2 - 4 cm, 5 - 6-ribbed, red; stalk 3.5 - 4 cm long, about 2 mm thick; pericarp adhering to seeds; seeds many, 5 - 7 x 5.5 - 6.5 mm. Large-Petal Caper is endemic to slopes of Nilgiri and Coorg hills. Flowering: February-August.

Identification credit: Lalithamba Avadhanam Photographed in Sathyamangalam Tiger Reserve, Tamil Nadu.

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