Taraxacum sect. Atrata

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Taraxacum sect. Atrata

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Common names

Chinese (China): 黑蒲公英组 hei pu gong ying zuA

Description

"Plants delicate, usually glabrous to subglabrous. Petiole usually unwinged; leaf blade usually narrow, undivided or shallowly lobed. Capitulum often nodding after anthesis. Outer phyllaries 5–15, blackish green to dark green, ± of equal length, appressed, loosely appressed, or rarely erect, narrowly lanceolate to lanceolate, usually broadest in middle, almost unbordered to bordered, margin usually glabrous but seldom sparsely minutely ciliate, apex without a horn but sometimes callose, rarely to corniculate. Ligules yellow, lilac, pinkish to light pink-purple, sometimes with different colours outside and inside. Achene usually greyish stramineous-colored brown to blackish brown, (3.5–)4–5(–6) × 0.8–1.1 mm; body smooth or less often sparsely minutely tuberculate above, cone absent or achene body gradually narrowing into an indistinct cone, cone (when developed) broadly conical to conical and 0.4–0.8 mm; beak 1.5–5(–7) mm, ± thick, easily breaking off. Pappus yellowish white or white, 4–7 mm. "

from: Ge X., Kirschner J. & Štepánek J. in Wu Z. Y. & al. (ed.), Flora of China 20–21: 314. 2011, Beijing & St Louis.
B

Systematics

Taraxacum sect. Atrata, with currently some 18 species known, is one of the taxa with morphological characters that are considered as plesiomorphic in the genus, such as almost smooth achenes, absence of a discernible cone and a thick or thickened beak. The other taxon is known as T. subsect. Epyramidata (= T. sect. Oligantha sensu Soest 1977). Both occur in the mountain ranges of Middle Asia, which represent the major centre of diversity of the genus. Some members of T. sect. Atrata are conspicuous for the unusual flower colours, ranging from lilac or pinkish to light pink purple, the others are pale or bright yellow as mostly in the genus.C

Distribution

Taraxacum sect. Atrata has its centre of diversity C and E Tian Shan, the Ketmen Tau and the Dzhungar Alatau ranges (E Kazakhstan, Kirgizstan and NW China). Its distribution is extends northeastwards to NW Mongolia and southwards to Tadzhikistan, N Pakistan and Kashmir. Its members are vonfined to alpine and subnival habitats, occurring almost exclusively at elevations above 3000 m.C

Bibliography

A. Wu & al., Flora of China 20-21. 2011
B. Kirschner J. & Štěpánek J., A revision of Taraxacum sect. Atrata, a dandelion group centred in the Middle Asia, and the problem of Taraxacum brevirostre in Phytotaxa 305: 225-261. 2017: 227
C. Kirschner J. & Štěpánek J., A revision of Taraxacum sect. Atrata, a dandelion group centred in the Middle Asia, and the problem of Taraxacum brevirostre in Phytotaxa 305: 225-261. 2017