The Phytogeography of Taraxacum, with special reference to Europe
1. Introduction. The genus Taraxacum, lacking in the tropical regions, is widely distributed in the northern hemisphere and only locally found in the southern one. The evolutional history has been discussed by von Handel-Mazzetti; though this seems to be a speculative business, according to its extrapolative character, his study contains many valuable thoughts. He places the origin of Taraxacum in western central Asia, with which I can agree. The density of sections is also greatest here. The genus in evolution expanded to the East, the North and the West; though partly interrupted, the tracks can be more or less reconstructed. From a morphological point of view, he concluded to the existence of species of lower and higher organisation level, the latter also called by him “young” species. Restricting ourselves to the fruit characters, we can list these as follows: Lower organization Achenes small, smooth, gradually ending into a cone. Rostrum absent or short. Pappus short, dirty white. Higher organization big, spinulate, suddenly ending into a cone. long. longer, pure white.
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van Soest, J.L. (1958). The Phytogeography of Taraxacum, with special reference to Europe. Blumea. Supplement, 4(1), 60–67.