This section is from the book "Sub-Alpine Plants Or Flowers Of The Swiss Woods And Meadows", by H. Stuart Thompson. Also available from Amazon: Sub-Alpine Plants: Or, Flowers of the Swiss Woods and Meadows.
Densely villous with shaggy hairs. Stem erect, with several leaves, simple or branching above, each bearing a large, handsome capitulum, like the involucre covered with stellate hairs as well as simple, long, white hairs, usually dark at the base. Leaves bluish green, thin, acute or acuminate, entire or slightly dentate, villous or rough on both sides, or the lower leaves glabrescent. Root and lower stem-leaves lanceolate, elliptical, sessile, or narrowed into a foot-stalk; upper stem-leaves ovate or ovate-lanceolate, sessile, with a rounded or heart-shaped amplexicaul base. Limb of the ligulate flowers glabrous or slightly hairy or ciliated. Flowers bright yellow. Involucral bracts very acute, and woolly. A variable species.
Rocks and rocky pastures of the calcareous Alps up to 8500 feet. July, August.
Carpathians; Eastern, Central, and Western Alps. Erzgebirge, Jura, Apennines.
Stem erect, about a foot high, covered like the whole plant with a dense, short, grey tomentum, branched above, and bearing several large capitula. Root-leaves ovate, acuminate, entire, or obscurely sinuate, stalked; stem-leaves sessile, lanceolate, acuminate, amplexicaul. Involucral bracts very woolly, lanceolate, acuminate, about as long as the fruit with the pappus. Flowers yellow.
Limestone rocks and cliffs; 3000-6500 feet; local. June to August.
Switzerland (Valais), Western Alps from Haute-Savoie to the Var and Alpes Maritimes; Piedmont, Apennines.
A very distinct plant, well worth cultivating on old walls and limestone rocks in sunny positions.
Stem-leaves long and lanceolate, and clasping the stem by rounded auricles, entire or toothed. Stems very leafy, rather hairy, and much-branched at the top. Flower-heads or capitula rather small, on slender, glandular peduncles. Involucres sub-cylindrical, with obtuse bracts glandular. Achenes greyish white. Flowers yellow.
Meadows and pastures and stony mountain woods. Often quite common in the sub-Alps from 3000-5000 feet. July to September.
Eastern, Central, and Western Alps, Eastern Pyrenees, Apennines, Norway. Most of Europe (rare in Britain), Siberia, Persia.
A very distinct species, covered with viscid, glandular hairs and smelling of musk. Stem 6-12 inches high, leafy, usually branched. Leaves narrowly lanceolate, with wavy or coarsely-toothed margins, the lowermost narrowed at the base; upper leaves sessile, or more or less amplexicaul. Capitula solitary on each branch. Flowers pale yellow, soon fading. Achenes sometimes brown and sometimes black.
Stony gullies and steep shady places at about 5000 feet, chiefly on granite soil, as near Le Planet above Argentiere and higher towards the Col de Balme; very local. August, September.
Eastern, Central, and Western Alps, from the Maritime Alps to Carinthia; Bavaria.
This is a suitable Hawkweed to introduce into English rockworks, and we believe Messrs. R. Wallace and Co. of Colchester will shortly have it established in their nurseries from true seed from Savoy.
It is quite impossible in a book of this character to describe more than a very few of the most important of the many Hieracia found in the lower Alps. Nor can there be much advantage in giving a bare list of the innumerable species, many of them difficult to distinguish, which frequent the Alpine and sub-alpine regions. An up-to-date arrangement of those found in Switzerland alone can be found in the Flore de la Suisse, by Schinz and Keller, while Gremli's Swiss Flora (at present out of print in the English edition) also gives a good account of them.