56. Taraxacum sikkimense Handel-Mazzetti, Monogr. Taraxacum. 103. 1907.
锡金蒲公英 xi jin pu gong ying
Type: India. Sikkim: "Lachen," 12,000 ft, Jul 16/49, J. D. Hooker s.n. (lectotype, designated here: K, no. det. 8783).
Herbs (2.5-)6-10(-12) cm tall. Petiole usually purplish, unwinged; leaf blade ± mid-green, narrowly oblong-lanceolate in outline, 2.5-8(-12) × 0.9-1.5 cm, ± sparsely arachnoid, pinnatisect, midvein usually purplish; lateral lobes 3 or 4 pairs, narrowly triangular, strongly recurved, proximal margin ± straight and entire, distal margin at base straight or convex and entire, apex subacute to subobtuse; interlobes long, narrow; terminal lobe narrowly triangular-sagittate or almost 3-partite, margin entire, apex often obtuse. Scapes brownish green, ± equaling leaves, arachnoid. Capitulum 2-3 cm wide. Involucre 0.9-1.2 cm wide, base narrowly rounded. Outer phyllaries 13-19, ± blackish green, subimbricate, linear-triangular to linear-lanceolate, outermost ones 4.5-6 × 1-1.3(-2) mm and 1/3-1/2 as long as inner ones, ± subglabrous, with a whitish to pinkish 0.2-0.3 mm bordered gradual transition into a dark middle band, ± flat or callose below apex; inner phyllaries black-green, 1.1-1.4 cm, apex ± flat. Outer ligules whitish to whitish yellow, ± flat, outside striped purplish; inner ligules pale yellow. Stigmas blackish to dark grayish green. Anthers polliniferous; pollen grains irregular in size. Achene deep red, 4.5-4.8 × 1-1.1 mm; body ± smooth below, distally densely spinulose, ± abruptly narrowing into a cylindric 1-1.3 mm cone, spinules suberect and acute; beak 5-6 mm. Pappus white to slightly yellowish white, ca. 6 mm. Fl. summer. Agamosperm.
Alpine grasslands; 3800-5000 m. Xizang [India (Sikkim), Nepal].
Taraxacum sikkimense is also reported from Qinghai, Sichuan, and Yunnan (FRPS 80(2): 58. 1999; Higher Pl. China 11: 783. 2005), but more evidence is needed.