Centaurea Axillaris Willd. (C. Variegata Lam)

Very similar to the last, but with pinnatifid lower leaves and oval involucral bracts, which have a brown margin with cartilaginous, silver-white teeth. Flowers blue, rarely red or white.

Dry places and wood clearings up to 5300 feet; local.

Distribution

Switzerland and Western Alps. July, August.

Centaurea Uniflora L. (Plate XXII)

Stem 8-12 inches high, erect, simple, and always 1-headed, cottony. Leaves white-cottony on both sides, 1-nerved, oblong-lanceolate, entire or obscurely toothed, the lower leaves prolonged into a petiole; upper leaves sessile. Involucre large, sub-globular. Bracts dark brown, with the fringed, linear-subulate apex very long and completely turned back. Cilia of bracts long and plumose. Flowers bright purple. Before they expand the involucral bracts form a curious feathery ball.

Alpine pastures and meadows, 5000-8200 feet. July to September.

Distribution

Central and Western Alps as far south as the Maritime Alps. Not in Switzerland.

1. BARTSIA ALPINA. 2. CENTAUREA MONTANA. 3. CENTAUREA UNIFLORA. 4. CAREX FI.AVA. 5. CAREX LEPORINA (YOUNG STATE).

Plate XXII.

1. BARTSIA ALPINA.

2. CENTAUREA MONTANA.

3. CENTAUREA UNIFLORA.

4. CAREX FI.AVA.

5. CAREX LEPORINA (YOUNG STATE).

4/7 NATURAL SIZE.

Centaurea Nervosa Willd

Resembling the last, but more robust and hispid, and of a grey-green colour. The leaves have prominent nerves on the under side, and are irregularly toothed, the stem-leaves being broader and truncate or auricled at the base.

High pastures up to 7700 feet or 2350 metres. July to September.

Distribution

Eastern, Central, and Western Alps; local.

This occurs in Switzerland, and is considered by the modern Swiss botanists a sub-species of C. uniflora, which does not occur in their country.

Centaurea Scabiosa L

Stems about 2 feet high, much branched at the base. Leaves doubly pinnatifid with more or less lanceolate lobes, often coarsely toothed or lobed. Flower-heads large, with purple florets, the outer ones neuter. Involucral bracts broad, bordered with a black adpressed fringe. Pappus of stiff hairs or bristles, nearly as long as the achene.

Pastures and roadsides from the plains to the Alps. July, August.

Distribution

Europe and Russian Asia, but not in the extreme north. British Isles.

Centaurea Rhaponticum L. (Rhaponticum Scariosum Lamk)

A tall, robust and handsome plant, with erect, simple stem and large leaves which are grey-white cotton-felted beneath, entire; the lower ones broadly lanceolate, subcordate, petioled, usually toothed at the margin. Flower-heads large, solitary, terminal. Outer involucral bracts broadly ovate, scarious, laciniate or strongly ciliate at the margins, slightly woolly. Flowers purple.A very distinct plant.

Rocky mountain-sides from 4000-6000 feet; scarce. July.

Distribution

Eastern, Central, and Western Alps, from Carniola and Tyrol to the Maritime Alps.

In the Valais this handsome species can be seen in such places as near Lac Champex and Bourg St. Pierre.