Prostrate Knotweed
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Prostrate Knotweed
aturalized Photo: Gurcharan Singh
Common name: Prostrate Knotweed, birdweed, pigweed, lowgrass • Hindi: Ban-natia, Bannalia, Bigbund, Hunraj, Kuwar, Machoti • Sanskrit: Miromati, Nisomali • Urdu: Bikh anjabar
Botanical name: Polygonum aviculare subsp. depressum    Family: Polygonaceae (Knotweed family)
Synonyms: Polygonum aviculare var. depressum, Polygonum calcatum, Polygonum arenastrum

Prostrate Knotweed is plant which native to Eurasia, but naturalized widely - in India it is seen growing in Kashmir. Stems are 3-15, prostrate to ascending, mat-forming, branched at most nodes, 10-50 cm. Leaves are carried on 0.5-3 mm stalk. They are elliptic to narrowly elliptic or oblanceolate, 8-27 m long, 2-7 mm broad, about 2.8-5.7 times as long as wide, tip blunt or pointed. Stem leaves are 1-2.3 times as long as branch leaves. Flowers are borne in cymes uniformly distributed or, sometimes, crowded at tips of branches, 2-7-flowered. Flower stalks are enclosed in sheaths, 1-2.5 mm. Flowers are 2-3.4 mm, 1.5-2.9 times as long as wide. Flower-tube is 40-57% of flower length. Tepals are overlapping but spreading slightly in fruit, green or reddish brown with white margins, oblong, flat. Stamens are 5-7. Achenes are usually slightly protruding from the perianth, dark brown, ovate, 1.5-2.7 mm, faces evidently unequal, flat to concave, tip straight or slightly bent toward narrow face, almost smooth, roughened, or coarsely striate-tubercled. Flowering: May-November.

Identification credit: Gurcharan Singh
Photographed in Balgarden, Srinagar, Kashmir.
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