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Carduus Linn.


Description from Flora of China

Herbs, biennial or perennial. Stems with spiny wings. Leaves subentire or pinnately divided, spiny. Capitula solitary to clustered. Involucre cylindric to depressed-globose. Phyllaries imbricate. Florets bisexual. Corolla purple to red or rarely white. Stamen filaments densely pubescent; anther with short, basal appendages entire to somewhat lacerate. Style branches short. Achene narrowly obovoid, laterally compressed, often with 10-15 slender longitudinal striae but otherwise smooth; elaiosome crowned by an inconspicuous disk. Pappus 4 or 5 rows of scabrid bristles, outer ones shorter than inner.

About 95 species: tropical Africa, Asia, Europe; three species in China.

(Authors: Shi Zhu (石铸 Shih Chu); Werner Greuter)


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