Silver Nailroot

Silver Nailroot / Paronychia argentea / رجل الحمامة

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Status: Common

Silver nailroot belongs to the Caryophyllaceae family in the Caryophyllales order that grows in sandy areas, ways, abandoned fields and dry terrains. This plant is evergreen Perennial with hemicryptophyte life form. The stem with 15-30 cm height, usually creeping, much branched, mat forming. The leaves are opposite which mean that they are two leaves per node, leaf margin is smooth and the leaf type is entire. The flowers grow in lateral and terminal glomerulus. They are hermaphrodite, pentamerous and actinomorphic, accompanied with scaly silver bracts bigger that themselves. Inflorescence, cyme; 5 white, yellow petals and flowering period from January-April. Flowers are pollinated by insects. It cannot grow in the shade. It prefers dry or moist soil. The fruit is an achene. Spinescence is absent and it is non-succulent.

Ecology: It is glycophyte in terms of salt resistance, it is mostly natural, but also synanthropic.

Habitat: Batha, Phrygana and the chorotype is Mediterranean. They can be encountered all around the Mediterranean Sea. It grows in abandoned or dry terrains, dunes and ditches, and flourishes from winter to summer.

Plant Uses: It is used stewed, as a diuretic and blood purifier, and as a plaster to cure wounds. It is useful as a ground cover to form a low carpet.

Distribution in Palestine: Mediterranean Woodlands and Shrublands, Semi-steppe shrublands, Shrub-steppes, and Deserts.

Other names: Silvery Whitlow- Wart.

IUCN red list status: not evaluated

Local status: least concern