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Annual herb from a taproot; stems erect, solitary, branched, 0.2-1.0 m tall, greenish to greyish-mealy, often reddish-tinged with age.
Stem leaves alternate, somewhat succulent, broadly lanceolate, deltoid, egg-shaped or diamond-shaped, 3-10 cm long, shallowly to prominently toothed or lobed, sparsely to densely mealy.
Inflorescence of densely clustered terminal or axillary spikes, greenish; with or without bracts.
Thin, membranous envelopes 1-1.5 mm broad; seeds black, shiny, flattened.
The two subspecies recognized by Tutin (1964) for C. album appear to be present in our flora. They may be distinguished as follows:
1. Leaves lanceolate, egg-shaped or diamond-shaped, often abruptly sharp-pointed, margins not always parallel; stems green or red................ ssp. Album
1. Leaves oblong, obtuse, margins more or less parallel; stems often red striped.......................ssp. striatum (Krasan) J. Murr in Urban & Graebn.
Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia