Herbs with whorled or opposite leaves and no stipules. Ftowers in dense heads surrounded by an involucre as in Composite. Calyx adherent, pappus-like, surrounded by a special scarious involucel, corolla tubular, somewhat irregular, the limb 4 to 5-parted. Stamens 4, alternate with the lobes of corolla, often unequal. Anthers distinct. Ovary inferior, one-celled, one-ovuled. Style one, simple. Fruit dry, indehiscent, with a single suspended seed. (Fig. 206.)
Genera 6, species 150. The order is nearly allied to the Compositae. The species are all natives of the temperate regions of the eastern continent, none of them American. Their properties are unimportant. One of the species below is useful in dressing cloth.
1. DIP'SACUS, L. Teasel. (Gr. , to thirst; water is held in the axils of the leaves.) Flowers in heads; involucre many-leaved; involucel 4-sided, closely investing the calyx and fruit; calyx superior ; corolla tubular, 4-cleft, lobes erect; fruit 1-seeded, crowned- with the calyx. - (2) Plants stout, prickly. Lvs. opposite, connate (sometimes distinct) at base. Heads oblong, the middle zone of florets first expanding. (Fig. 206.)
1 D. sylvastris Mill. Wild Teasel. Lvs. connate, sinuate or jagged; hds, cylindrical; bracts of the involucre longer than the heads of fls., slender and pungent, bent inwards; chaff of the receptacle pungent, not hooked. - A tall, thistle-like plant, growing in hedges and by roadsides, Mass. to Ind. St. about 4f high, angled and pricky, with the opposite, lance-shaped lvs. united around it. Fls. bluish, in a large oval, or cylindrical head whose bracts are not hooked, as in the next species, but straight. Jl. § Eur.
2 D. Fullonum L. Fuller's Teasel. Lvs. connate, entire or serrate; hd. cylindrical; bracts hooked; invol. spreading. - Gardens. Rt. fleshy, tapering. St. erect, farrowed, prickly, hollow, about 5f high. Lv3. 2 at each node, united at their bases around the stem in such a way as to hold a quantity of water. Fls. whitish, in large oval or ovoid heads. Cultivated for the use of the clothiers (fullonum) who employ the heads with their hard, hooked scales to raise the nap upon woolen cloths. Jl. ‡ Eur.
2. SCABIO SA, L. Scabish. (Lat. scabies, leprosy ; plants said to cure cutaneous diseases.) Flowers in heads ; involucre many-leaved ; involucel nearly cylindrical, with 8 little excavations ; calyx limb consisting of 5 setae, sometimes partially abortive. -Ц Large, mostly European herbs with opposite lvs.
1 S. succisa L. Devils'-bit. Rt. premorse; st. lvs. remotely toothed, hds. of fls. nearly globous; cor. in 4 equal segments. - In gardens, though rarely cultivated. The stem is about If high. Corolla violet, † Eur.
2 S. atropurpurea L. Mourning Bride. Lvs. pinnatifid and incised, hds. of fls. radiant; receptacle cylindric; outer crown of the seed short, lobed and crenate. - A beautiful species, 2 to 4f high, with dense heads of purple fls.† Native country unknown.