Scabiosa olivieri (Gintzburger et al., 2003)

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Carex physodes
Gintzburger et al., Rangelands in Uzbekistan, 2003
Scabiosa olivieri (Gintzburger et al., 2003)
Elaeagnus angustifolia
Scabiosa olivieri

Scabiosa olivieri Coult.

Local name:

  • Russian: Скабиоза Оливье - skabioza Oliv'e
  • Uzbek: Skabiozi

Chromosome numbers: 2n = 16 (Chuksanova unpublished data).

Description and morphology: Annual plant (height 7–50 cm), much-branched from base. Stem: erect to ascending, densely covered by long coarse hairs. Leaves: small, opposite, pinnatifid, pinnatisect or almost lyrate (2–5 cm long, 0.3–1 cm wide), lanceolate or oblonglanceolate; glabrous or sparsely hairy from above and densely pubescent from below. Flowers: bisexual; mauve, regular or zygomorphic, tetra- or pentamerous, sympetalous. Calyx stipate, nearly sessile, light brown (sometimes ciliate). Outer calyx (4–5 mm long) with short, campanulate, tubular base and small rotate limb; inner calyx awns (7 mm long), much exerted. Limb of fruit calyx small or absent. Inflorescence: terminal, few-flowered, hemispherical head-like (0.8–1.0 cm in diameter), supported by green, leaf-like bracts. Involucrate leaflets 3–5 oblong or widely ovate, spiny-tipped (3.0–4.5 mm long, about 2 mm wide); densely pubescent from above. Perianth segments shovel-shaped, pale (3.0–3.5 mm long, about 1 mm wide), upper with individual white hairs. Corolla: 4–5-lobed, purple or pink; 4 or 5 epipetalous stamens (1–2 mm long), filaments short, accreted at their bases with corolla tube. Ovary inferior, monospermous. Stigma funnel-shaped.

Reproduction: Sexual. Flowering: April–June. Fruit maturation: June–July. Fruit: achene, lanceolate (2.5–3 mm long), long hairs at apex and crowned by persistent calyx.

Pastoral importance: None.

Fodder value: None.

Habitat: Occurs on fixed sands or low sand dunes, in the adyr (flats and plains), on stonygravelly slopes, as a weed along channels and ravines. Found as single plants or in open patches.

Distribution: Central Asia, Caucasus, Syria, Egypt, Iran, Afghanistan and Pakistan.