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Mediterranean perennial (Cheiranthus cheiri) of the family Cruciferae (or Brassicaceae; mustardmustard,
common name for the Cruciferae, or Brassicaceae, a large family chiefly of herbs of north temperate regions. The easily distinguished flowers of the Cruciferae have four petals arranged diagonally ("cruciform") and alternating with the four sepals.
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 family), particularly popular in Europe, where it flourishes on old walls. An old-fashioned garden flower, it is similar in appearance to the related stock and is also sometimes called gillyflower. The early spring blossoms are often much doubled; yellow, red, and brown are the prevailing colors. Related species are also called wallflower, e.g., the orange-flowered Siberian, or western, wallflower (Erysimum asperum), which occurs both wild and in cultivation in North America. Wallflowers are classified in the division MagnoliophytaMagnoliophyta
, division of the plant kingdom consisting of those organisms commonly called the flowering plants, or angiosperms. The angiosperms have leaves, stems, and roots, and vascular, or conducting, tissue (xylem and phloem).
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, class Magnoliopsida, order Capparales (or Brassicales), family Cruciferae (or Brassicaceae).
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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.



(Cheiranthus cheiri), an ornamental plant of the genus Cheiranthus. A blue-gray subshrub with large, yellow flowers that are gathered in racemose inflorescences, it grows in rich lime soils in southern Greece and on the Aegean Islands. Wallflowers are often forced as potted plants or as cut flowers; they also grow in open ground as biennials. Garden forms and varieties of wallflower are included in two groups: bushy forms, with several flower-bearing shoots; and single-shoot forms, without branches. These forms are also distinguished by height, the size and structure of the flower (single and double), and the color of the petals (yellow, orange, velvety brown, violet, or mottled).

The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.


1. a plant, Cheiranthus cheiri, of S Europe, grown for its clusters of yellow, orange, brown, red, or purple fragrant flowers and naturalized on old walls, cliffs, etc.: family Brassicaceae (crucifers)
2. any of numerous other crucifers of the genera Cheiranthus and Erysimum, having orange or yellow flowers
Collins Discovery Encyclopedia, 1st edition © HarperCollins Publishers 2005
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