Saturday, September 27, 2014

Botany picture #177: Klasea nudicaulis

Yesterday I finally received the specimens from my collecting in Europe earlier this year and started putting names on the so far unidentified specimens. The above species turned out to be among them: Klasea nudicaulis (a.k.a. Serratula nudicaulis, Asteraceae).

I can't help myself but the generic circumscriptions in the thistle tribe Cardueae don't really seem intuitive to me. I look at something like this and go, oh, obviously a Centaurea, and half the time it turns out to be something else, and I have no idea why. The characters used to differentiate the various genera in the keys are usually those that I would expect to be rather homoplasious, like the shape of the end of the involucral bracts.

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