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Tibetan Sea Buckthorn
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Tibetan Sea Buckthorn
P Native Photo: Sonam Tamchos
Common name: Tibetan Sea Buckthorn • Ladakhi: ཙེརྨང་ Tsermang, སསྟལུལུ་ Sastalulu
Botanical name: Hippophae tibetana    Family: Elaeagnaceae (Oleaster family)
Synonyms: Hippophae rhamnoides subsp. tibetana

Tibetan Sea Buckthorn is a small, sometimes rhizomatous shrub, 10-60 cm tall. Older stems are dark gray, thick, with regularly spaced scars of deciduous leafy branches; leafy stems slender, unbranched, spine tipped. Leaves are mostly in whorls of 3; leaf-stalk about 1 mm; leaf blade below whitish, above grayish, linear-oblong, 1.2-2 x 0.25-0.4 cm, densely scaly, below with scattered subentire, reddish brown scales and reddish brown midrib, margin flat. Male flowers are about 2 mm; anthers about 1.5 mm. Flower-cluster-stalks 1-2 mm. Fruit is yellowish green, spherical to elliptic, round, 8-11 x 6-9 mm. Endocarp is difficult to separate from seed. Seed is somewhat flattened, 4-5.6 x 1.9-2.8 mm. Tibetan Sea Buckthorn is found in dry gravelly or stony places, especially on riverbeds and flood plains, at altitudes of 3600-4700 m, in China, Bhutan, N India, Nepal.

Identification credit: Sonam Tamchos Photographed in Ladakh.

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