- n Talinum genus of mainly American more-or-less succulent herbs
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n talinum A genus of polypetalous plants, of the order Portulaceæ. It is characterized by two herbaceous and mostly deciduous sepals, usually ten or more stamens, a capsule three-celled when young, and strophiolate shining seeds borne on a globular stalked placenta. There are about 14 species, natives principally of tropical America, 2 occurring in Africa or Asia. They are smooth fieshy herbs, sometimes a little shrubby, bearing flat and mostly alternate leaves, and flowers with ephemeral petals, chiefly in terminal cymes, racemes, or panicles. T. patens, a plant of rocky coasts from Cuba and Mexico to Buenos Ayres, is cultivated as a border-plant, especially in a white and variegated variety. (See puchero.) Several others are sometimes cultivated under glass for their handsome flowers, which are mostly red, yellow, pink, or purple. T. teretifolium, a native of the United States from Pennsylvania to Colorado and southward, a low tuberous-rooted perennial, growing on rocks and exceptional in its cylindrical leaves, has been called fame-flower from the transitoriness of its elegant purple petals. Other species also occur in the south and west.