Tribulus terrestris L.

First published in Sp. Pl.: 387 (1753)
This species is accepted
The native range of this species is Old World. It is an annual or biennial and grows primarily in the temperate biome.

Descriptions

Zygophyllaceae, Hutchinson and Dalziel. Flora of West Tropical Africa 1:2. 1958

Morphology General Habit
A trailing herb, woody below, from pubescent to tomentose
Ecology
A pest of footpaths and fields.
[FWTA]

Zygophyllaceae, E. Launert. Flora Zambesiaca 2:1. 1963

Morphology General Habit
Annual herb, extremely variable in habit, with spreading prostrate and usually decumbent branches, ± pubescent, villous or hispid, sometimes glabrescent in all vegetative parts; branches up to 2 m. long, sometimes woody at the base.
Morphology Leaves
Leaves unequal, the larger up to 6 cm. long (usually somewhat smaller) with up to 8 pairs of leaflets; the smaller up to 3·5 cm. long (usually much smaller) with up to 6 pairs of leaflets; leaflets 4–15 × 1·5–7 mm., rather oblique, oblong, oblong-lanceolate or lanceolate-ovate, acute or subobtuse, villous on both surfaces or nearly glabrous.
Morphology Leaves Stipules
Stipules up to 10 mm. long, linear or linear-lanceolate, acute.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Inflorescences Peduncles
Peduncle usually shorter than, or as long as the subtending leaf.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers Calyx
Sepals 3–6 mm. long, linear-lanceolate, usually villous outside.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers Corolla
Petals light yellow, 3–8 (12) mm. long, broadly cuneate, usually shorter than or as long as or sometimes up to 2·3 times the length of the sepals.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers Androecium Stamens
Filaments about 3 mm. long; anthers 0·5–1 (1·2) mm. long.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers Gynoecium Pistil
Style very short; stigma 0·8–1·2 mm. long, hemispheric, mostly asymmetric and nearly sessile on the ovary.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers Gynoecium Ovary
Ovary with stiff bulbous-based hairs.
Morphology General Glands
Intrastaminal glands not connate.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Fruits
Fruit breaking up into 5 cocci, each with 2 ± strong divergent spines in the upper and 2 smaller ones in the lower part, usually crested on the back, tuberculate and strigose.
[FZ]

M. Thulin. Flora of Somalia, Vol. 1–4 [updated 2008] https://plants.jstor.org/collection/FLOS

Distribution
Tropical and subtropical regions throughout the world.
Morphology General Habit
Pubescent to villous annual-Leaves 2–6 cm long; leaflets 5–8 pairs, oblong to lanceolate, usually 4–18 x 1.5–5 mm; stipules linear to lanceolate, up to 8 mm long
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers Pedicel
Pedicel 5–10 mm long
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers Calyx
Sepals linear-lanceolate, 3–6 mm long
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers Corolla
Petals yellow, 4–8 mm long
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers Androecium Stamens
Stamens 8–10; filaments up to 3 mm long
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers Gynoecium Style
Style very short or absent; stigma ± pyramidal, c. 1 mm long
Morphology Reproductive morphology Fruits
Fruit disc-shaped; pedicel c. 10 mm long; mericarps 4–5 x 2–3 mm, with 2 pairs of spines.
[FSOM]

Zygophyllaceae, M. Nabil El Hadidi (Faculty of Science, Cairo University). Flora of Tropical East Africa. 1985

Morphology General Habit
Annual ± pubescent, villous or hispid herb; branches prostrate, up to 90 cm. long; internodes up to 6 cm. long, 2-3 mm. in diameter.
Morphology Leaves
Leaves 3-6 cm. long; leaflets 5-8 pairs, oblong to lanceolate, 4-8 × 1.5-5 mm.; stipules linear to lanceolate, up to 8 mm. long.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers
Flower medium-sized, up to 15 mm. across; pedicel 5-10 mm. long, shorter than the subtending leaf.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers Calyx
Sepals linear-lanceolate, 3-6 × 1-2 mm., deciduous.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers Corolla
Petals lemon-yellow to orange-yellow, 4-8 × 3-6 mm.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers Androecium Stamens
Stamens 8-10 in 2 whorls; filaments up to 3 mm. long; anthers 0.5-1 mm. long.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers Gynoecium Pistil
Ovary globular, 1 mm. across; style very short or absent; stigma pyramidal, 0.8-1.2 mm. long.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Fruits
Fruit disc-shaped; stalk ± 1 cm. long; mericarp 4-5 × 2-3 mm., provided with 2 pairs of spines.
Habitat
Open and disturbed places, often on sandy soils, becoming a troublesome weed; 0-2300 m.
Distribution
K1 K2 K3 K4 K5 K6 K7 T1 T2 T3 T4 T5 T6 T7 tropical and temperate regions throughout the world
[FTEA]

Common Names

English
(Land) calthrop, Burnut, Devil's thorn, Puncture vine

Sources

  • Flora Zambesiaca

    • Flora Zambesiaca
    • http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0
  • Flora of Somalia

    • Flora of Somalia
    • http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0
  • Flora of Tropical East Africa

    • Flora of Tropical East Africa
    • http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0
  • Flora of West Tropical Africa

    • Flora of West Tropical Africa
    • http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0
  • Herbarium Catalogue Specimens

    • Digital Image © Board of Trustees, RBG Kew http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/
  • Kew Backbone Distributions

    • The International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Vascular Plants 2023. Published on the Internet at http://www.ipni.org and https://powo.science.kew.org/
    • © Copyright 2022 World Checklist of Vascular Plants. http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0
  • Kew Names and Taxonomic Backbone

    • The International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Vascular Plants 2023. Published on the Internet at http://www.ipni.org and https://powo.science.kew.org/
    • © Copyright 2022 International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Vascular Plants. http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0
  • Kew Science Photographs

    • Copyright applied to individual images
  • Plants and People Africa

    • Common Names from Plants and People Africa http://www.plantsandpeopleafrica.com/
    • © Plants and People Africa http://www.plantsandpeopleafrica.com http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/