Cistanche flava (Gintzburger et al., 2003)

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Nitraria sibirica
Gintzburger et al., Rangelands in Uzbekistan, 2003
Cistanche flava (Gintzburger et al., 2003)
Hypecoum parviflorum
Cistanche flava
Cistanche flava
Cistanche flava

Cistanche flava (CAM.) Korsh.

Local name:

  • Russian: Цистанхе желтой - cistanhe želtoj
  • Turkmen: Ilan-doodak
  • Uzbek: Ilonchup
  • Russian: Цистанхе желтой

Chromosome number: 2n = 20 (Reese 1957); 2n = 40 (Garde 1952; Fedorov 1969). Description and morphology: Perennial parasitic plant (height 60–100 cm). Long underground vertical stem connected to roots of host plant. Flowers: yellowish, inconspicuous on short peduncle, assembled in long pyramidal spiked inflorescence emerging from sand on robust stalk. Calyx 5-lobed. Scales of flowers, bracts and calyx segments glabrous. Corolla (30–40 mm long), yellow and blue on lower surface. Ovary glabrous with incurvate style.

Reproduction: Flowering: May–June. Fruit: Capsule, 2–3 folding.

Pastoral importance: None.

Fodder value: None.

Economic interest: Long underground, tuberous whitish stem rich in alkaloids which are collected and sold to Chinese merchants for traditional medicine for treatment of gynaecological and urological (kidney) problems.

Habitat: Occurs on sand dunes, most often in the northern-west Kyzylkum and northerneast Karakum. Parasitic mostly on roots of Calligonum spp.

Distribution: Middle and Central Asia. All areas with Calligonum spp.