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India (N); Andhra Pradesh; Bihar; Madhaya Pradesh; Maharashtra; Orissa; Tamil Nadu; Uttar Pradesh; West Bengal (as per ILDIS)
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October 25 @ Waghai – Ahwa Road, Dangs, South Gujarat. Approx. 330m asl.
The identity of the plant is close to the two names mentioned in the subject line.
Both names in the subject line are accepted names in theplantlist.
I am not sure how the two are related in taxonomic terms.
Information on both species is very sketchy on the net.
Desmodium brachystachyum Schltdl. FBI 2:171
Desmodium benthamii N.P.Balakr. – No better person than Dr. Balakrishnan himself to tell us more.
Notes:
This area is the northern-most part of the western ghats and receives very good rainfall.
Erect, branched, undershrub, 40-50cms by the roadside.
Leaf: 1-foliolate (no trifoliate leaves seen), oblong, hairy beneath; Petiole & stipules [image -66] as seen.
Inflorescence: distant raceme, not congested,12-15 cms, proximal flowers blooming first;
Bracts: almost identical to Uraria rufescens. Slightly smaller here, shape and pubescence same.
Stamens diadelphous.
Style: no info on pubescence
Plant hairy, sticky to touch.
No fruit seen conclusively on the plant (but one image [-72] of what I think is the fruit [4-6mm] attached – I saw it only while processing the images, not in the field. You will notice it is within the calyx and the calyx itself is hanging loosely on the plant, having fallen off ie. disconnected from the pedicel).
I could see the pedicels ending abruptly, the flower/ fruit having fallen off, in a large number of places on the inflo, therefore cannot comment whether the fruiting pedicel was reflexed or not.
Final plant id may be one of the subject line species or another.
I hope you find the plant as interesting as I did.
P.S.: Please also visit my post* of an very similar plant which was a shrub 1.5 – 1.75 m tall
identified as U. rufescens by me.
Your identification is correct. This plant is Desmodium benthamii N.P.Balakr. 1966 (Syn. D. brachystachyum Benth.; D. benthamii H.Ohashi 1973).


 


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References: The Plant List Ver.1.1 ILDIS  WFO Kew  Embryology and Apomixis in Grasses By T. Pullaiah, G. N. V. Febulaus (2000- Details with keys) 

Flora of Davanagere District, Karnataka, India By B. K. Manjunatha  (2004- Details with keys)

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