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Genus Cardamine Family Brassicaceae

Description: Annual or perennial herbs.

Leaves variable in size and dissection, generally less than 10 cm long.

Flowers in racemes, usually many-flowered. Sepals equal or nearly so. Petals white or pink. Stamens usually 6, rarely 4.

Siliqua linear, c. 1 wide, erect, dehiscent, the valves released suddenly from the base upwards, ejecting the seeds; valves flat, without conspicuous veins; septum margin flanged.

Distribution and occurrence: World: 160 species, chiefly temperate regions. Australia: 8–11 species, all States.

Note: species numbered 6–9 are included by Hewson (1982) as informal variants of the C. lilacina complex. Further investigation is required to decide on appropriate rank for these taxa.

Text by L. Retter & G. J. Harden
Taxon concept:

Taxa not yet included in identification key
Cardamine sp. Bingara (G.Steenbeeke NSW875399)

 Key to the species 
1Vegetative parts with hairs (look closely at margins of cauline leaves and pedicels)2
Vegetative parts glabrous (sometimes hairy in C. paucijuga, rarely hairy in C. lilacina)6
2Most flowers with 4 stamens; plant sparsely hirsuteCardamine hirsuta
Most flowers with 6 stamens; plants hairy overall, or plant with hairs on cauline leaves and/or pedicels
                       Back to 1
3Plants glabrous except for hairs on margins of cauline leaves and/or pedicels4
Plant mostly hairy
                       Back to 2
4Plants minutely papillose on pedicels and sometimes along margins of cauline leaves; terminal pinna of cauline leaves entireCardamine papillata
Plants with ciliate margins on cauline leaves; terminal pinna of cauline leaves 5–9-lobed
                       Back to 3
Cardamine microthrix
5Upper surface of leaves with hairs (hairs erect in fresh material); seeds 1–1.2 mm long; base of stem green and moderately hairyCardamine flexuosa
Upper surface of leaves mostly glabrous; seeds 0.8–1.0 mm long; base of stem either purple and pubescent, or green and moderately hairy
                       Back to 3
Cardamine occulta
6Plants semiaquatic, of swampy habitat; leaves filiform; stems weak, to 1 m long with numerous fine roots at nodesCardamine tenuifolia
Plants generally terrestrial; leaves not filiform; stems nodes without numerous fine roots
                       Back to 1
7Vegetative stems stoloniferous; basal leaves usually simple, ovate, arising singly at intervals along the horizontal stem, not forming a basal rosetteCardamine astoniae
Stems not stoloniferous; basal leaves forming a rosette (sometimes not evident in Cardamine moirensis)
                       Back to 6
8Plants spreading by means of robust, white, underground stems, which ascend to form new rosettes; plant forming dense swards up to 1 m diam., confined to alpine regions of Kosciuszko N.PCardamine robusta
Plants not as above
                       Back to 7
9Terminal pinna of basal leaves 2- or 3-lobed10
Terminal pinna of basal leaves entire
                       Back to 8
10Terminal pinna of basal leaves cordate at base; flowers 3–6 mm longCardamine paucijuga
Terminal pinna truncate-cuneate; flowers 2–3.5 mm long
                       Back to 9
Cardamine moirensis
11Seeds 1.5–3 mm longCardamine lilacina
Seeds <1.5 mm long
                       Back to 9
12Basal leaves either, entire and spathulate, or pinnate with terminal pinna ellipticCardamine franklinensis
Basal leaves long petiolate, pinnate, with terminal pinna with a cordate base
                       Back to 11
Cardamine paucijuga

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