Taraxacum sect. Leucantha

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Taraxacum sect. Leucantha

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Common names

Chinese (China): 白花蒲公英组 bai hua pu gong ying zuA


Some 25 species are recognized in Taraxacum section Leucantha, which is widely distributed in Central Asia. The sections morphologically and ecologically closest to T. sect. Leucantha are T. sect. Suavia, confined to steppe and semi-steppe habitats, and T. sect. Stenoloba, usually inhabiting montane gravelly sites. Apart from occasional intermediate species, most taxa recognized in these three sections can relatively easily be classified on the basis of achene characters. (Kirschner & al. 2006; Kirschner & al. 2020: 60).

The systematics of T. sect. Leucantha and its synonymy with T. sect. Sinensia is discussed by Kirschner & Štěpánek (2004).B,C,D


"Plants usually slender. Leaves usually subglabrous to sparsely arachnoid, narrow in outline, shallowly to deeply lobate to dissected with subpatent to downward-pointing lobes. Scapes ± glabrous to sparsely arachnoid. Outer phyllaries usually tightly appressed, imbricate or sometimes not, not numerous, (9) 10–16 (19), greenish to dark green, usually with a broad, less often narrow, distinct, paler or reddish margin, ovate to lanceolate, not corniculate or ± corniculate near apex. Flowers white, white-yellow, pale yellowish (more deeply in the centre of capitulum) or yellow, ligules flat, rarely cucullate. Pollen absent or, if present, of variable size. Achenes pale greyish or stramineous brownish, ± thick (usually 0.9–1.0 mm), subdensely coarsely spinulose with subacute stout spinules often slightly curved upwards, subabruptly narrowing in a thick (0.4–0.5 mm in diam.), subcylindrical cone usually 0.7–1.0 mm long; beak thick or ± thin, 5–7 mm long, pappus white or yellowish (dirty) white or pale yellowish-brownish or brownish, ca. 5–7 mm long."

from Kirschner & Štěpánek (2004: 263) and Kirschner & al. (2020: 60)B,D


Asia-Temperate: Afghanistan nativenative; Altay nativenative; Amur doubtfully present; Buryatiya native; China North-Central (Gansu native, Hebei native, Shaanxi native, Shanxi native); China South-Central (Sichuan native); Chita native; Inner Mongolia (Nei Mongol native, Ningxia native); Iran native; Irkutsk native; Kazakhstan native; Khabarovsk native; Kirgizistan native; Manchuria (Heilongjiang native, Jilin native, Liaoning native); Mongolia nativenative; Primorye native; Qinghai native; Tadzhikistan native; Tibet native; Tuva native; Xinjiang native Asia-Tropical: India (Uttar Pradesh reported in error); Pakistan nativenative; Vietnam native; West Himalaya native (Himachal Pradesh reported in error, Jammu-Kashmir native) Europe: Northwest European Russia introduced


A. Wu & al., Flora of China 20-21. 2011
B. Kirschner J. & Štěpánek J., New sections in Taraxacum in Folia Geobot. 39: 259–274. 2004
C. Kirschner J., Štěpánek J. & Klimeš L., Dandelions in Central Asia: A taxonomic revision of Taraxacum section Leucantha in Preslia 78: 27–65. 2006
D. Kirschner J., Štěpánek J., Klimeš L. & al., The Taraxacum flora of Ladakh, with notes on the adjacent regions of the West Himalaya in Phytotaxa 457: 1-409. 2020