wallflower, Mediterranean perennial ( Cheiranthus cheiri ) of the family Cruciferae (mustard 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 Magnoliophyta, class Magnoliopsida, order Capparales, family Cruciferae.

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

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