Description: Annual herbs, delicate, glabrous, often glaucous, stems weak, angular and often trailing or climbing.
Leaves deeply divided 2 or 3 times, ultimate segments variously pinnatisect, leaves on young plants often forming rosettes, stem leaves alternate, some species ± climbing by sensitive petiolules.
Inflorescence a raceme, 10–40-flowered, usually dense during flowering and elongating during fruiting stage.
Fruit nut-like, ± globose, 2–3 mm diam.
Distribution and occurrence: World: c. 50 species, Europe, Mediterranean, Asia & 1 species East Africa. Australia: c. 7 species (naturalised), all States.
All species in New South Wales are weeds, often growing in cultivation, near habitations or along creeks. Fumaria formerly placed in family Fumariaceae. Note: the measurement of the corolla is that of the larger flowers; some species also produce cleistogamous flowers with a small corolla, especially towards the end of flowering season. A number of species are cultivated as ornamentals, especially in cooler districts.
Text by G.J. Harden
Taxon concept: Australian Plant Census (accessed April 2017)
| ||Key to the species|| |
|1||Leaf segments flat, more or less lanceolate to ovate, more than 2 mm wide; peduncle in fruiting stage at least 10 mm long; dried fruit smooth or wrinkled||2|
|Leaf segments channelled, more or less linear, usually less than 1 mm wide; peduncle in fruiting stage more or less absent or less than 10 mm long; dried fruit wrinkled||8|
|2||Pedicels recurved in fruit; inflorescence much shorter than the relatively long peduncle; fruit smooth when dry||Fumaria capreolata|
|Fruiting pedicels erect or spreading; inflorescence at least as long as the peduncle; fruit usually wrinkled, seldom smooth|
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|3||Corolla more than 9 mm long; lower petal not spathulate||4|
|Corolla less than 9 mm long; lower petal spathulate or not spathulate|
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|4||Inflorescences usually less than 15-flowered; fruit mostly smooth, sometimes finely wrinkled, when dry; lower petal with erect margins; upper petal dorsally compressed||Fumaria muralis|
|Inflorescences 15–25-flowered; fruit distinctly wrinkled when dry; lower petal with spreading margins; upper petal laterally compressed|
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|5||Sepals less than 1 mm long; bracts at least as long as the pedicels||Fumaria indica|
|Sepals ± 1.5 mm long; bracts shorter than the pedicels|
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|6||Lower petal not spathulate||7|
|Lower petal spathulate|
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|7||Inflorescences mostly 12–15-flowered; fruit smooth or finely wrinkled when dry; lower petal with erect margins; upper petal dorsally compressed. Smaller cleistogamous flowers||Fumaria muralis|
|Inflorescences 15–25-flowered; fruit distinctly wrinkled when dry; lower petal with spreading margins; upper petal laterally compressed. Smaller cleistogamous flowers|
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|8||Inflorescences sessile; sepals less than 1.5 mm long; corolla mostly white, usually 4–6 mm long||Fumaria parviflora|
|Inflorescences usually shortly pedunculate; sepals 2.5–3.5 mm long; corolla pink, mostly 6–7 mm long|
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