102. Taraxacum qirae D. T. Zhai & C. H. An, J. Aug. 1st Agric. Coll. 18(3): 3. 1995.
策勒蒲公英 ce le pu gong ying
Herbs 5-12 cm tall. Petiole usually suffused purplish, winged in some leaves, base arachnoid; leaf blade mid-green with a green to pinkish midvein, ± oblanceolate, 2-9 × 1-1.5 cm, subglabrous, shallowly pinnatilobed to remotely dentate; lateral lobes or teeth 3-5 pairs, broadly triangular, 2-4 mm, usually recurved, margin entire; interlobes broad or not developed in undivided dentate leaves, margin entire; terminal lobe triangular, margin entire, apex subobtuse, basal lobules or teeth ± recurved. Scapes suffused purplish, ± overtopping leaves, sparsely arachnoid to subglabrous. Capitulum 2.5-3 cm wide. Involucre 8-10 mm wide, base ± rounded. Outer phyllaries 8-11, middle part blackish with a gradual transition into a whitish to white border, not imbricate, narrowly lanceolate, outermost ones 9-14 × 2-4 mm and ca. 3/4 as long as inner ones, ± loosely appressed, border 0.6-1 mm wide, margin glabrous, apex conspicuously corniculate; inner phyllaries blackish, 1.3-1.8 cm, corniculate below apex. Ligules yellow; outer ligules flat, outside striped gray; inner ligules with gray apical teeth. Stigmas blackish. Anthers polliniferous; pollen grains irregular in size. Achene ochraceous brown when unripe but later getting darker and becoming dark brown, 4.2-4.5 × 1-1.1 mm; body spinulose above, ± abruptly narrowing into a subconic 0.8-0.9 mm cone, spinules thin, erect-patent, and acute; beak 5-6 mm. Pappus ± white, ca. 6 mm. Fl. summer. Agamosperm.
● Mountain meadows and pastures; ca. 3100 m. S Xinjiang (Qira).
Taraxacum qirae, a species described from the Kunlun Shan, is clearly a member of T. sect. Borealia. Its closest relative, T. pavlovii Orazova, growing in C Tian Shan of Kazakhstan, differs in having substantially more numerous outer phyllaries and totally different achenes. The geographically closest member of this section, T. karakoricum Soest, lacks the whitish borders to the outer phyllaries and has a different leaf shape. The latter species might be found in China as it was described from the Karakoram of Pakistan, not far from the Chinese border.