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Genus Arctium Family Asteraceae

Description: Erect biennial herbs, with a stout taproot.

Leaves alternate, tomentose, entire or with mucronate teeth on the margins.

Heads solitary or in corymbose to racemose clusters; involucral bracts many-seriate, glabrous or with cobwebby hairs, outer recurved in fruit, apex spinous and inwardly hooked; receptacle flat, with numerous rigid, subulate scales. Disc florets tubular, bisexual, purple or white. Anthers sagittate at base, apex acuminate. Style branches linear.

Achenes oblong, compressed, wrinkled; pappus-hairs barbellate, in several unequal rows, golden-yellow, free.


Distribution and occurrence: World: 5 species, Eurasia, northern Africa. Australia: 2 species (naturalized), Qld, N.S.W., Vic., Tas.

Text by L. Murray
Taxon concept:

 Key to the species 
1Heads few, on peduncles more than 2 cm long, each main branch corymbose; petiole of basal leaves solid; florets about as long as involucral bractsArctium lappa
Heads numerous, racemose (in clusters in leaf axils), the terminal heads usually solitary; peduncles less than 2 cm or absent; petiole of basal leaves hollow; florets usually longer than involucral bractsArctium minus

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