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Pakistan | Family List | Ranunculaceae

22. Ceratocephala Moench, Meth. 218. 1794. Boiss., Fl. Orient. 1: 57-58. 1867, Ovez. in Komarov, Fl. URSS. 7: 324-325. 1937, Qureshi & Chaudhri in Pak. Syst. 4(1-2):196.1988.


Naturhistorisches Museum, Botanische Abteilung, Wien, Austria.


National Herbarium, Pakistan Agricultural Research Council, Islamabad, Pakistan.

Ceratocephala falcata

Small annual plants with palmatipartite leaves and linear leaf segments. Flowers solitary. Sepals 5. Petals yellow, with a basal nectiferous gland covered with scales. Stamens numerous. Carpels numerous, arranged in an elongated cylindrical spike, firmly attached to the receptacle, with 2 hard hollow protuberances and a long beak.

Represented by 2 species widespread from Europe to C. Asia, with mainly synanthropic distribution, often as agricultural weeds. None of them is of any economical importance.

Doubtful Species

Ceratocephala caulifolius Qureshi & Chaudhri in Pak. Syst. 2 (1-2):18. Pl. XX, Fig. A,B. 1978.

According to the authors the species is characterised by the stem branched from the base, the absence of radical leaves and presense of cauline ones and the many-flowered inflorescence.

Type: Gilgit: Ishkuman mt., Mir Ajab & M. Afzal 271 b (ISL).

This might possibly be a misidentification. I have not examined the type specimen, but the combination of characters mentioned above are unl ikely for the genus Ceratocephala. It is obvious from the plate (XX, Fig. H) that the numerous achenes are the product of a single flower and not ‘many-flowers’ as mentioned by the authors (op. cit.).

1 Beak of carpels narrow, straight   1 Ceratocephala testiculata
+ Beak of carpels + flattened, gradually widening towards the curved base   2 Ceratocephala falcata

Lower Taxa

Related Synonym(s):


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