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Published In: Species Plantarum 2: 1035. 1753. (1 May 1753) (Sp. Pl.) Name publication detailView in BotanicusView in Biodiversity Heritage Library

Project Name Data (Last Modified On 6/2/2011)
Acceptance : Accepted
Project Data     (Last Modified On 6/3/2011)
General/Distribution: A genus of 36 species, distributed in N. Africa and E. Mediterranean to Central Asia. Represented in Pakistan by 12 species.


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Perennial herbs. Rhizome fleshy, slender or thick, erect-creeping, with scaly or foliage radical leaves. Scaly radical leaves triangular or suborbicular, membranous, brown. Flowering stems arising from the axils of the scaly leaves, simple, annual, deciduous or marcescent, few to many. Cauline leaves alternate, usually sessile, simple, fleshy, often glaucous. Inflorescence terminal, usually cymose rarely racemose, simple or compound cyme, sometimes reduced to a solitary flower, mostly bracteate. Flowers pedicellate or sessile, 4-6-merous, bisexual or unisexual, then plant dioecious. Calyx lobes fleshy, united at the base. Corolla polypetalous, longer than the calyx, red or purplish red, white, yellow, greenish-yellow. Stamens twice as many as petals, in two whorls; stamens absent in female flowers. Nectar scales oblong, linear, squarish. Carpels superior or semi-inferior, basally syncarpic, ovary sessile, orthocarpic, style slender, marginal placentation, pistillodes present in male flowers, ovules anatropous, few-many. Follicles few to many-seeded, brown, longitudinally striae.

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1 Plants with basal rosette. Scaly leaves absent on the apical part of rhizome. (2)
+ Plants without basal rosette. Scaly leaves present on the apical part of rhizome. (3)
2 (1) Calyx lobes broadly oblong-ovate to broadly ovate. Nectar scales transversely narrowly oblong. Rhodiola saxifragoides
+ Calyx lobes oblong. Nectar scales oblong-broadly oblong. Rhodiola pachyclados
3 (1) Flowers bisexual. (4)
+ Flowers unisexual. (5)
4 (3) Epipetalous stamens 7-8 mm long, alternipetalous 7.5-12 mm long. Flowering stem 3-6 mm wide. Ovules 26-36 per locule. Nectar scales broadly oblong. Rhodiola wallichiana
+ Epipetalous stamens 2.5-3.5 mm long, alternipetalous 5-6.5 mm long. Flowering stem 1-2.5 mm wide. Ovules 12-18 per locule. Nectar scales square. Rhodiola sinuata
5 (3) Flowering stem deciduous. (6)
+ Flowering stem persistent. (8)
6 (5) Stamens distinctly twice as long as the petals. Leaves triangular-ovate, broadly cordate. Ovules 20-32 per locule. Flowers sessile or subsessile. Rhodiola heterodonta
+ Stamens as long as or longer than petals but never twice as long as the petals. Leaves elliptic to oblong-ovate or obovate. Ovules 10-16 per locule. Flowers pedicellate. (7)
7 (6) Stamens longer than the petals, epipetalous 3.5-4.5 mm long, alternipetalous 5.5-8 mm long. Petals yellow. Seeds ellipsoidal with elongated apex. Rhodiola imbricata
+ Stamens as long as the petals, epipetalous 2-3.5 mm long, alternipetalous 2-4 mm long. Petals purplish red. Seeds ellipsoidal with rounded apex. Rhodiola bupleuroides
8 (5) Inflorescence dense, corymbiform, capitate. Rhodiola recticaulis
+ Inflorescence not as above. (9)
9 (8) Cauline leaves 1.6-4 mm wide. Flowering stems 1.5-3 mm wide. (10)
+ Cauline leaves 0.6-1 (-1.5) mm wide. Flowering stems 0.5-1 mm wide. (12)
10 (9) Flowering stems 1-5 cm long. Inflorescence few-flowered, usually reduced to a single flower. Rhodiola coccinea
+ Flowering stems 6-25 cm long. Inflorescence many-flowered, not reduced to a single flower. (11)
11 (10) Petals narrowly elliptic to narrowly obovate, linear-oblanceolate. Stamens epipetalous 3-4.5 mm long, alternipetalous 4-6 mm long. Rhodiola fastigiata
+ Petals oblong. Stamens epipetalous 1.7-2.5 mm long, alternipetalous 2.5-3.5 mm long. Rhodiola tibetica
12 (9) Petals 3.5-6 mm long. Stamens 4-6 mm long. Ovules 14-16 in each locule. Style 0.7-1.2 mm long. Rhodiola fastigiata
+ Petals 2-3.5 mm long. Stamens 2-4 mm long. Ovules 4-12 in each locule. Style indistinct. (13)
13 (12) Winter buds inconspicuous at anthesis. Flowering stems 1-5 cm long. Rhodiola coccinea
+ Winter buds conspicuous at anthesis. Flowering stems 6-10 cm long. Rhodiola quadrifida
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