43. Saussurea involucrata (Karelin & Kirilov) Schultz Bipontinus, Linnaea. 19: 331. 1846.
雪莲花 xue lian hua
Aplotaxis involucrata Karelin & Kirilov, Bull. Soc. Imp. Naturalistes Moscou 15: 389. 1842; Saussurea involucrata var. axillicalathina J. S. Li; S. ischnoides J. S. Li; S. karelinii Stscheglejew; S. lioui Y. Ling; S. polylada J. S. Li.
Herbs 15-50 cm tall, perennial. Caudex stout, unbranched, densely covered with fibrous remains of petioles. Stem solitary, 1.5-3 cm in diam., erect, simple. Rosette and stem leaves petiolate; leaf blade narrowly ovate, elliptic, or obovate, 8-13 × 2-4 cm, both surfaces green and glandular hairy, base decurrent, margin denticulate to serrulate, apex acute to obtuse. Uppermost stem leaves sessile, ovate to elliptic, 5.5-12 × 3.5-6.5 cm, membranous, stellately surrounding synflorescence, both surfaces pale yellow. Capitula 10-20, in a hemispheric synflorescence 8-15 cm in diam., sessile or shortly pedunculate. Involucre hemispheric to broadly campanulate, 1-2.5 cm in diam. Phyllaries in 3 or 4 rows, dark or light brown with dark margin, sparsely pubescent, apex acute; outer phyllaries narrowly ovate-elliptic, 8-11 × 2.5-5 mm; middle and inner phyllaries narrowly elliptic to linear, 10-18 × 1.5-2 mm. Receptacle papillose; papillae 0.5-1 mm. Corolla purple, 1.3-1.8 cm, tube 7-9 mm, limb 6-9 mm, lobes 3-5 mm. Achene straw-colored with blackish spots, cylindric, 4.8-6.7 mm, 5- or 6-ribbed. Pappus dirty white; outer bristles 0.5-3 mm; inner bristles 0.8-1.5 cm. Fl. Jul-Aug, fr. Aug-Oct. 2n = 32*.
Mountain slopes, mountain valleys, by water, meadows, in rock fissures; 2400-4100 m. C, N, and W Xinjiang [Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Mongolia].
The whole plant of Saussurea involucrata is used medicinally, and the species is endangered in China due to over-collecting.
Most previous records from the Chinese Altay probably belong to Saussurea orgaadayi, but the occurrence of S. involucrata cannot be excluded there.