Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Botany picture #159: Carduncellus mitissimus

The other plant group that I obviously - for professional reasons - took a lot of picture of while in Europe are the daisies, and in particular members of the thistle tribe Cardueae. This is Carduncellus mitissimus (Asteraceae), a nearly stemless plant I found growing copiously between pasture grasses in the Corbieres. Nice colour, and it would probably look good in a rock garden.

This is one of a few small groups where I seriously wonder who ever thought it was a good idea to segregate them from the knapweed genus Centaurea. I mean, if you only know a bit about daisies, as a botanically interested layperson would, you look at this thing, see the scarious tips of the inner involucral bracts, and you immediately start at the Centaurea key where of course you will only find frustration but not this species. What is more, if even half of these silly satellite genera don't fall squarely inside of Centaurea on a phylogeny I will eat my hat.

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