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Annual herb from a taproot; stems weak, branched, climbing-sprawling, angled, with short backward-pointing prickles along the angles, 0.3-1.0 m long.
Lower leaves often deciduous, oblanceolate, stalked, 2-10 cm long, to 2.5 cm wide, roughly stiff-hairy and irregularly stiff-fringed, opposite, more or less entire, the others gradually reduced upwards, becoming more elliptic or somewhat diamond-shaped and unstalked, partly whorled or alternate, often widely spaced.
Single or in clusters of 2-3 on short, thick, downward-curving stalks from the axils of leaves or bracts or forks of branches; corollas narrowly bell-shaped; petals at first purplish then blue, fused at base into a short tube that flares (2-3 mm wide) at top to 5 tiny lobes, with 5 white bulges at the throat; calyces with 5 deltoid lobes, each lobe with a tooth on each side near the base; fruiting calyces enlarging (to 1-2 cm wide), becoming compressed, firm-papery, net-veined, prickly with stiff hooked or curved hairs, and forming a 2-lipped covering around the silicles.
Nutlets 4, clustered together, enveloped by the calyx, narrowly egg-shaped, 2.5 mm long, with shiny, cobblestone-patterned surface and small, off-centre groove. vol2_2
Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia