Overview

Comprehensive Description

General Description

Plants 15-100 cm tall, pubescent with falcate hairs, inflorescence with capitate and clavately tipped glandular hairs. Rhizomes with tuberous thickening at apex. Leaves narrowly to broadly ovate, rarely nearly orbicular, 1.8-9 cm long, 1.5-5 cm wide, base rounded, broadly cuneate, or cordate, margin denticulate, apex acute to shortly acuminate. Inflorescence simple or branched, sometimes also with terminal racemes on upper axillary branches. Flowering pedicels perpendicular to axis of raceme or slightly ascending, with stipitate glandular hairs, with or without a minute bracteole at base. Buds sparsely pubescent, rarely glabrous; floral tube 0.4-0.8 mm. Sepals spreading to reflexed, white, green or reddish tinged, oblong to ovate, 1.8-2.5 mm long, 1.1-1.5 mm broad, apex gradually rounded to obtuse or acute. Petals white or pink, broadly to narrowly obtriangular in outline, V-shaped, 1.4-2.3 mm long, 1.3-2 mm broad, apical notch 3/4 length of petal. Stamens ca. equal to or shorter than style; nectary inconspicuous, within floral tube. Fruiting pedicel and mature fruit 7.5-15 mm. Fruit narrowly to broadly clavate, 3.5-4.2 mm long, 0.9-1.6 mm broad, tapering smoothly to pedicel, without prominent ribs and deep sulci, but with a shallow groove representing an extension of pedicel; locule 1, but with trace of a second locule in cross-section. Seed 1.
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Distribution

W Hubei, Sichuan, Xizang, Yunnan [Bhutan, N India, Myanmar (one gathering), Nepal, Pakistan (one gathering)].
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Circaea repens is W Hubei, Sichuan, Xizang, Yunnan of China, Bhutan, N India, Myanmar, Nepal, Pakistan.
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Himalaya (Kumaun to NEFA), Burma, W. China.
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Distribution: Pakistan (one collection); northwest India through the Himalayas to south central China.
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Physical Description

Morphology

The fruit of Circaea repens often shows a trace of a second locule in cross-section, but bears only a single seed. In many ways this species is intermediate between species with one and two locules.
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Description

Plants 15-100 cm tall, pubescent with falcate hairs, inflorescence with capitate and clavately tipped glandular hairs. Rhizomes with tuberous thickening at apex. Leaves narrowly to broadly ovate, rarely nearly orbicular, 1.8-9 × 1.5-5 cm, base rounded, broadly cuneate, or cordate, margin denticulate, apex acute to shortly acuminate. Inflorescence simple or branched, sometimes also with terminal racemes on upper axillary branches. Flowering pedicels perpendicular to axis of raceme or slightly ascending, with stipitate glandular hairs, with or without a minute bracteole at base. Buds sparsely pubescent, rarely glabrous; floral tube 0.4-0.8 mm. Sepals spreading to reflexed, white, green or reddish tinged, oblong to ovate, 1.8-2.5 × 1.1-1.5 mm, apex gradually rounded to obtuse or acute. Petals white or pink, broadly to narrowly obtriangular in outline, V-shaped, 1.4-2.3 × 1.3-2(-2.9) mm, apical notch 3/4 length of petal. Stamens ca. equal to or shorter than style; nectary inconspicuous, within floral tube. Fruiting pedicel and mature fruit 7.5-15 mm. Fruit narrowly to broadly clavate, 3.5-4.2 × 0.9-1.6 mm, tapering smoothly to pedicel, without prominent ribs and deep sulci, but with a shallow groove representing an extension of pedicel; locule 1, but with trace of a second locule in cross-section. Seed 1. Fl. Jul-Oct, fr. Jul-Nov. 2n = 22.
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Elevation Range

2000-2800 m
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Description

Herbs, 1.5-10 dm tall, simple or rarely branched below the inflorescence. Forming subterranean rhizomes terminated by tubers. Plants pubescent, the stem with short recurved hairs, the inflorescence axis and pedicels with spreading gland-tipped. hairs. Leaves narrowly to broadly ovate, rarely sub-orbicular, acute to short acuminate at the apex, broadly cuneate to cordate but most commonly rounded at the base, minutely to prominently denticulate, pubescent. Largest leaf blades 1.8-9 x 1.5 -5.5 cm. Petioles 1.5-5.5 cm, pubescent. Pedicels 2.3-5 mm, pubescent, perpendicular to the axis of the raceme at anthesis. Unilocular ovary with soft uncinate hairs. Floral tube 0.4-0.8 mm long. Sepals 2, 1.8-2.5 x 1.1-1.5 mm, pubescent abaxially, rarely glabrous, white, green or reddish tinged, spreading or reflexed in flower. Petals 2, 1.4-2.3 x 1.3-2.9 mm, white or pink, broadly to narrowly obtriangular in outline, V-shaped, the apical notch commonly ¾ or more the length of the petal. Stamens 2, spreading to ascending at anthesis, subequal to or shorter than the style. Style erect, 2.6-4.2 mm. Mature fruit 3.5-4.2 x 0.9-1.6 mm, unilocular, 1-seeded, narrowly to broadly clavate, tapering smoothly to the pedicel, densely covered with stiff uncinate hairs. Fruiting pedicels spreading to reflexed. n = 11.
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Diagnostic Description

Synonym

Circaea alpina Linnaeus var. himalaica C. B. Clarke.
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Synonym

Circaea repens Wall., Numer. list, no. 6341. nom. nud. ; Circaea lutetiana sensu C. B. Clarke in Hook. f., Fl. Brit. India 2: 589. 1879, non Linnaeus 1753; Circaea alpina L. var. himalaica C. B. Clarke in Hook. f., Fl. Brit. India 2: 589. 1879.
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Circaea repens is close relative of Circaea alpina, but differs from the latter in its petals notched to more than 1/2 their length (vs. to 1/2 or less their length), V-shaped (vs. obovate to obtriangular), pedicels glandular pubescent (vs. glabrous), leaves with 9-15 (vs. 4-10) secondary veins, combined length of mature fruit and pedicel 7.5-15 mm (vs. 3.5-7.8 mm).
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Ecology

Habitat

In shade of moist to wet forests, bushy thickets and moist open places, 1500-3300 m. elev. Circaea repens is transitional between unilocular and bilocular species in that it bears a trace of a second locule. Fl. Per. early Jul.-Oct. Fr. Per. late Jul.-Nov.
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Moist to wet forests, thickets, and open places; 1500-3300 m.
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Growing in moist to wet forests, thickets, and open places; 1500-3300 m.
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Life History and Behavior

Cyclicity

Flowering from July to October; fruiting from July to November.
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Evolution and Systematics

Evolution

Circaea (Onagraceae), a genus of seven species from the northern hemisphere, forms a monophylctic group defined by the following synapomorphies: two stamens (opposite the sepals), fruits indehiscent capsules, hooked hairs on the fruits, and perianth parts reduced to two. A cladistic analysis of the genus was performed using characters from morphology, anatomy and palynology. Results of the cladistic analysis support Circaea repens and all six subspecies of C. alpina (single-seeded fruits, stolons terminated by tubers, and viscin threads reduced or absent) form a monophyletic clade (Boufford et al., 1990).
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Molecular Biology and Genetics

Genetics

The chromosomal number of Circaea repens 2n = 22 (Seavey and Boufford, 1983).
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Notes

Comments

The fruit of Circaea repens often shows a trace of a second locule in cross-section, but bears only a single seed. In many ways this species is intermediate between species with one and two locules.
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