YASIN J. NASIR
Macrotomia perennis (Schrenk) Boiss.
An erect hairy perennial. Roots thick, exuding a purplish dye. Stems several, up to 40 cm tall, axillary, arising amidst the leaves of previous year, fistular, striate, strigosely hairy: hairs up to 2 mm long. Basal leaves 3.5-12.5 x 5-11 mm, upper ones shorter, lanceolate, strigosely hairy, the hairs with bulbous base; nerves impressed above, prominent on the under surface. Inflorescence ± globose, 4-5 cm broad. Bracts leafy, ± size of calyx. Flowers yellow to purple in colour, sessile to subsessile, heterostylous calyx 13-17 (-25) mm long, villous with yellowish-white to white hairs up to 2 mm long; lobes linear-lanceolate,. Corolla tube 9-17 mm long, limb 10-15 mm broad; lobes suborbicular. Anthers linear, 2.4-3 mm long, attached near throat of corolla tube or at the middle. short styles 8 mm long (long styles 12.5 mm) reaching middle of corolla tube, bifid at apex. Stigmas 2, obtuse. Nutlets ± 3.5 mm long, rugose-tuberculate, greyish in colour, keeled.
Fl. Per.: June-July.
Type: Naho in Kunawar, Royle s.n. (K).
Distribution: Iran, Afghanistan, Pakistan from Kashmir eastward to Nepal.
The species is variable throughout its distributional range. The variation pattern (in size of plant, glandulosity, leaf breadth, infloressence and flower size) depends on the breeding behaviour due to heterostyly ensuring outcrossing. The ssp. grandis (Royle) I. M. Johnston from Iran differs mainly from the type subspecies in the cauline leaves with leaf base distinctly subcordate. The root exudes a purplish dye. Found from 3300-4800 m in the Himalaya.