L., Sp. Pl. 830 (1753).
Derivation: Medieval Latin carthamus, ultimately from qartam or qurtum, the Arabic name for the safflower, C. tinctorius.
Synonymy: Kentrophyllum Necker ex DC., Ann. Mus. Paris 16:158 (1810).
Common name: None
Spiny annual herbs; vestiture glandular; stems erect, branched, terete; leaves basal and cauline, alternate, spiny, dentate to pinnatisect, rigid;.
Capitula solitary, sessile, terminal, homogamous; involucres campanulate; bracts rigid, herbaceous, spine-tipped, imbricate in several series, the outer ones leaf-like; receptacle flat, densely hairy; florets all tubular, bisexual, fertile; corolla narrow below, abruptly widened and 5-lobed above; anthers sagittate at the base; style branches linear, diverging at the apex only, obtuse, without appendages.
Achenes 4-angled, truncately ovoid, glabrous, the outer ones rugose, the inner ones smooth; pappus multiseriate, of numerous narrow ciliate scales, or absent from the outer achenes.
About 20 species in the Mediterranean region and Asia.
Safflower, Carthamus tinctorius L., is sometimes cultivated for its oil-yielding seeds, and may persist on roadsides.
Key to Species:
Not yet available