Gentians moorcroftiana var. falconeri (Clarke) Clarke
Annual-biennial, 5-30 cm long, erect herb. Branching from base of from middle. Stem smooth, glabrous, shiny, canaliculate, branched from base or from above. Basal leaves rosulate, smaller than cauline, 0.5-1.5 x 0.3 0.6 cm, oblanceolate-ovate, obtuse, entire, mostly falling off early after flowering. Cauline leaves 1.75-35 x 0.4-0.8 cm, narrowly lanceolate-lanced late, acute, entire, 3-5 nerved. inflorescence a cyme, arising from axil of terminal leaves with 3-7 peduncles bearing flowers, peduncles long, of two types: one from main shoot are fewer with up to 4.0 cm long, second arising from axillary branches up to 10.0 cm long, filiform. Flowers solitary, campanulate, pentamerous. Calyx up to 2.5 cm long, tube ± equal or slightly longer than lobes, winged, lobes unequal, distichous, longer lobes 0.4-1.1 x 0.3-0.5 cm, broadly lanceolate, acute, entire, not wrinkled, smaller lobes 0.4 0.9 x 0.15-0.3 cm, lanceolate, acute, entire. Corolla campanulate, purple blue-light red tube up to 25 cm long, lobes 0.4-0.6 x 0.25-0.35 cm, oblanceolate, entire, obtuse, veined. Stamens alternating the corolla lobes, subexserted. Nectaries at the base of the tube, 2 each against a lobe, filaments inserted deep into the corolla tube, just above the nectaries, anthers versa tile, two lobed, dehiscing longitudinally, slightly saggittate beneath. Ovar stipitate, elliptic, up to 2.0 cm long, stigma sessile, not much distinct.
Fl. Per.: July-September.
Syntypes: In coll. Falconer (K!), Prope Puddum Himalayae boreali-occidentalis ad 12000 ped. Alt., Stoliczka.
B-8 Kashmir: below Kamri pass, 12500 ft., 14.9.1939, Saunders s.n.(BM), near Gurais, 8-9000 ft., 27.8.1892, Duthie s.n. (BM), Zanskar, 1931, Koelz A-42, A-46 (NY), id., Seni, alt. ca.12000 ft., 19-21,July 1933, Koelz 5804 (NY), Purig, 25-27, July, 1933, Koelz 5987 (NY, RAW), Rungdum, 1 km E of Zuildo, 4000 m, 1980, Southampton University 100 (K), Panichar, 500 m W of U nion of Suru and Chalang Nar rivers, 2900 m, 1980, Southampton University 32 (K), Ladak road, Wathen s.n. (K).
A Sino-Japanese element, restricted to Himalayas.
Clarke (1875) has indicated that most of the specimens, he had studied were supplied to him by Mr. King belonging to CAL. The syntypes, according to this statement should be in CAL, and as the Kew specimen is the duplicate, it should be considered as isosyntype.
This species was first described by Clarke (1875) but later (1883), he reduced it as a variety of Gentiana moorcroftiana Wall. ex G. Don [=Aloitis moorcroftiana (Wall. ex G. Don) Omer et al.]. However, the characters of broad calyx and campanulate corolla warrant it as an independent species.
This species has often been confused with Aloitis moorcroftiana (Wall. ex G.Don) Omer et al., and Aloitis maddeni (Clarke) Omer et al., However, Aloitis falconeri (Clarke) Omer et al. can easily be separated from the other two on the basis of calyx tube ± longer or equal to the calyx lobes and lobes being broader than in the other two taxa.
Aloitis falconeri (Clarke) Omer et al. is a unique species in the genus Aloitis Rafin. by h aving distichously unequal calyx lobes thus bringing the genus much closer to Gentianopsis Ma.