Wallich Rock-Cress
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Wallich Rock-Cress
A Native Photo: Ashutosh Sharma
Common name: Wallich Rock-Cress
Botanical name: Crucihimalaya wallichii    Family: Brassicaceae (Mustard family)
Synonyms: Arabidopsis wallichii, Arabis leptocarpa, Hesperis wallichii

Wallich Rock-Cress is an annual or biennial herb, about 10-70 cm long. Stem is erect or rising up, simple or branched from the base, densely hairy with star-shaped trichomes simple or forked, about 1-2 mm long. Basal radical leaves are in a rosette, obovate-oblong to inverted-lanceshaped in outline, about 2-7 x 0.5-2 cm across, margin deeply lyrately lobed or somewhat pinnately lobed. Stem leaves are smaller, linear-oblong or linear-inverted-lanceshaped, about 0.5-4 x 0.2-0.9 cm across, base arrow shaped or eared, margin wavy toothed, tip pointed, velvet-hairy on both sides rarely becoming hairless, stalkless. Flowers are borne in racemes, at branch-ends, 15-30 flowered, lax in fruit, about 10-20 cm long, ebracteate. Flowers are bisexual, pink, white or purple, actinomorphic, flower-stalk slender, star-shapedly velvet-hairy or rarely hairless, about 0.2-1 cm long, sepals 4, spreading, erect, oblong or ovate, pinkish green, densely velvet-hairy. Petals are 4, spoon-shaped-obovate, base narrowed, margin entire, tip blunt, about 2-3.5 x 0.7-1 mm across, claw about 1 mm long. Stamens are 6, filaments about 2-3 mm long. Fruit is a siliqua, splitting open, linear or round, curved or straight, compressed, valves papery, distinctly midveined, about 4-8 cm long, seeds are 20-70. Wallich Rock-Cress is found on rocky slopes, hillsides, limestone crevices and ledges in the Himalayas at altitudes of 1200-4400 m. It is found in Afghanistan, Bhutan, India, Kashmir, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Nepal, Pakistan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan; SW Asia. Flowering: April-August.

Identification credit: Ashutosh Sharma Photographed in Kullu District, Himachal Pradesh.

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