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Published In: Hortus Kewensis; or, a Catalogue of the Plants Cultivated in the Royal Botanic Garden at Kew. London (2nd ed.) 4: 121. 1812. (Dec 1812) (Hortus Kew.) Name publication detail

Project Name Data (Last Modified On 6/2/2011)
Acceptance : Accepted
Project Data     (Last Modified On 6/3/2011)
General/Distribution: About 30 species, chiefly Asian and of the Mediterranean region; only 7 recorded from our area.
Comment/Acknowledgements: A difficult genus due to polymorphic nature and wide hybridization of its many species. Recently Dvorak (l.c.) and Botsch.(l.c) have revived Fedtschenkoa Regel & Schmalh. and Strigosella Boiss., and according to the latter Malcolmia is left with a single species (s.str.) and Fedtschenkoa reduced to a section of Strigosella. These treatments have primarily been supported by chromosome number differences.


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Annual, rarely biennial herbs, erect to spreading, usually hairy (often scabrous or strigose) with simple and branched hairs, rarely glabrous. Leaves oblanceolate or elliptic, deeply pinnatifid to almost entire, stalked to sessile. Racemes often lax. Flowers small to large, white, pinkish to violaceous; pedicels often short and thickened in fruit, spreading or ascending. Sepals erect, inner usually saccate at base. Petals slightly to c. 4 times as long as the sepals, linear to oblanceolate. Stamens 6; filaments not appendaged; anthers oblong, obtuse. Lateral nectar glands in pairs, pyramidate; middle absent. Ovary linear or oblong-linear, many ovuled; stigma conical, bilobed with decurrent lobes, subsessile. Siliquae linear, ± terete or subcylindrical, bilocular, dehiscent (often tardily); valves somewhat rigid, pilose to glabrous, with a distinct mid-rib; septum submembranous, not veined; seeds 1-2-seriate, oblong, not winged.

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1 Flowers large with petals 2.5-3 times as long as the sepals (2)
+ Flowers mediocre with petals slightly to c. twice as long as the sepals (3)
2 (1) Plants short (up to 10 cm tall). Siliquae usually short, tapering from base to apex, 10-15(-25) mm long, (1.5-) 2-2.5 mm broad, often strigosely hairy below (rarely long or almost all hairs suppressed) Malcolmia cabulica
+ Plants usually tall (15-30 cm). Siliquae usually long, linear, slightly to conspicuously curved or coiled at the apex, torulose, (30-)40-50 mm long, 1 mm broad, glabrous or subglabrous Malcolmia behboudiana
3 (1) Siliquae often very much coiled to curved at the apex (4)
+ Siliquae usually straight (5)
4 (3) Siliquae much coiled above, ± torulose. Petals c. 6 mm long; pedicels c. 1 mm long; leaves obscurely toothed Malcolmia scorpioides
+ Siliquae slightly to distinctly curved or coiled at the apex. Petals c. 8 mm long; pedicels c. 2 mm long; leaves toothed Malcolmia brevipes
5 (3) Plants usually strong and tall, many flowered; siliquae often Strigosely or ciliately hairy (rarely hairs suppressed) (6)
+ Plants short or depressed, somewhat delicate, few flowered; Siliquae shot, almost glabrous Malcolmia intermedia
6 (5) Petals c. twice as long as the sepals, usually violet or pinkish. Siliquae usually 4-7 cm long, 1.5 (-c.2) mm broad, often pubescent with short and long mixed hairs (rarely hairs suppressed) Malcolmia africana
+ Petals c. 1.5 times as long as the sepals, usually whitish. Siliquae usually 2-3 cm long, 2 mm broad, often strigosely hairy Malcolmia strigosa
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