Greater Chickweed
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Greater Chickweed
B Naturalized Photo: Tabish
Common name: Greater Chickweed
Botanical name: Stellaria neglecta    Family: Caryophyllaceae (Carnation family)
Synonyms: Stellaria umbrosa, Stellaria media var. neglecta, Stellaria octandra

Greater Chickweed is an annual or biennial, pale green herb. Stems are clustered, 30-80 cm tall, with 1 line of hairs. Leaves are shortly stalked or stalkless, ovate or narrowly ovate, 2-3 x 0.5-1.3 cm, base wedge-shaped, somewhat clasping, tip pointed, basal leaf margin and stems between 2 basal leaves long hairy. Flowers are borne at branch-ends in dichotomous cymes; bracts lanceshaped, herbaceous, glandular velvet-hairy. Petals are 5, nearly as long as or slightly longer than sepals, 2-cleft nearly to base. Stamens are 8-10, slightly longer than petals. Styles 3. Sepals are 5, ovate-elliptic to lanceshaped, 3-4 mm, outside densely velvet-hairy with multicellular glandular hairs, margin membranous, tip pointed, inflexed. Flower-stalks are 1-1.5 cm, slender, with a line of dense soft hairs, nodding after flowering. Capsules are ovoid, longer than persistent sepals, 6-valved; valves curled. Flowering: April-June. Greater Chickweed is found at altitudes of 900-1200 m, from Europe to Temp. E. Asia, N. Africa. It is believed to have naturalized in NE India.

Identification credit: Tabish Photographed in Imphal, Manipur.

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