Unbranched Bean-Caper
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Unbranched Bean-Caper
A Native Photo: Prashant Awale
Common name: Unbranched Bean-Caper
Botanical name: Tetraena simplex    Family: Zygophyllaceae (Caltrop family)
Synonyms: Zygophyllum simplex, Zygophyllum obtusum, Zygophyllum microphyllum

Unbranched Bean-Caper is an annual, nearly berect to prostrate, 8-20 cm tall, profusely branched, hairless herb. Stem and branches are pale-green or purplish, minutely striped. Leaves are fleshy, simple, stalkless, oblong-cylindric, 4-18 mm long, tip blunt; stipules lanceshaped, 2-3 mm long, pointed. Flowers are yellow, fading to white, 4-5 mm across; flower-stalks slender, about 3 mm long; disc 10-lobed. Sepals are 5, elliptic-oblong, about 2 mm long, keeled, hoodlike. Petals are 5, spoon-shaped, about 3 mm long, flat at the tip. Stamens are 10, protruding, scales bipartite. Capsule deflexed, top-shaped, rugulose, retuse, septicidally dehiscent into 5, 2-3 seeded, compressed cocci. Seeds are oblong. Unbranched Bean-Caper is found in Pakistan (Sind, Baluchistan), India, Iran, tropical and north Africa, Cape Verde Islands and west Asia. Flowering: August-May.
Medicinal uses: An infusion of leaves and seeds is applied to the eyes in opthalmia and glucoma.

Identification credit: Prashant Awale Photographed near Jaisalmer, Rajasthan.

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