Centaurea squarrosa (Gintzburger et al., 2003)

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Carthamus tinctorius
Gintzburger et al., Rangelands in Uzbekistan, 2003
Centaurea squarrosa (Gintzburger et al., 2003)
Cousinia dichotoma
Centaurea squarrosa
Centaurea squarrosa
Centaurea cyanus
Centaurea cyanus

Centaurea squarrosa Willd.

Local name:

  • Russian: Василек растопыренный, Тош какра - vasilek rastopyrennyj, toš kakra
  • Uzbek: Tosh kakra
  • Turkmen: Yapur

Chromosome numbers: 2n = 36 (Chuksanova et al. 1968a).

Description and morphology: Biennial plant (height 20–70 cm), prostrate with numerous branches growing from base. Stem: singular, erect, from middle/rarely from bottom divaricated, deciduous branched and richly pubescent. Leaves: lower – (15–20 cm long) on long petioles, bipinnate; middle – (1.0–2.2 cm long, 0.4–4 mm wide), sessile pinnate; upper – (0.7–1.0 cm long, 1.5–2.0 mm wide), complete, oblong-linear, sessile. Lobes of leaves linear, slightly pointed from both sides, glandular. Capitulum (4.0–5.0 mm in diameter), numerous, terminal, oblong-oviform or almost cylindrical. Flowers: bisexual; pink or dark violet; corolla 5-lobed. White pappus (1.0–2.7 mm long).

Reproduction: Fruit: achene (3.5–4.2 mm long, 1.3–1.7 cm wide), ribbed with short rigid hairs, greenish-dark brown with yellow stripes on ridges. Dormancy B1 type. Dry storage of seed (3–12 months) and germination at 5–15 °C lift most of dormancy.

Fodder value: Low productivity. Poor value for most animals except camels (% DM): protein 5.9; fat 4.8; cellulose 43; nitrogen-free extract 32; ash 5.6.

Habitat: Occurs on foothills and steppes, on dry stony slopes and as a weed in cultivated fields.

Distribution: Central Asia (Pamir-Alai, Tien Shan, Turkmenistan, Caucasus) and East Asia.

Other: Centaurea sp.