Lactuca dissecta D.Don, Prodr. Fl. Nepal. 164. 164 1825. (Syn: Chondrilla auriculata Wall. [Invalid]; Lactuca arvensis Edgew.; Lactuca auriculata DC.; Lactuca stocksii Boiss.);
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Saudi Arabia (Hejaz, Asir), Oman (Mascat & Oman), Afghanistan (Baghlan, Bamyan, Herat, Kabul, Kunar / Nuristan, Laghman, Nangarhar, Paktia / Khost, Parwan, Samangan, Takhar), Pakistan (Baluchistan, Kurram, Waziristan, N.W.Frontier Prov., Chitral, Swat, Pakistani Punjab, Salt Range), Pakistani Kashmir (Gilgit, Baltistan, Nubra), Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Kazakhstan, Turkmenistan, China (Xinjiang), Bhutan, Nepal, Sikkim, Jammu & Kashmir (Poonch, Kashmir, Nubra, Ladakh), India (Himachal Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Indian Punjab, Haryana, Delhi, Madhya Pradesh, Darjeeling) as per Catalogue of life;
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Annual herb with simple or divaricately branched stems; Lower leaves obovate to ellptic, pinnateipartite with 3-6 pairs of lateral lobes, terminal lobe rhombic; cauline leaves auriculate; heads blue, blue-purple to pale yellow, in corymbose branches; florets 12-18; involucre bracts ovate to linear-lanceolate, outer shorter than inner, purplish-red in fruit; achene brown to blackish 2.5 mm long, 3-ribbed on either side, with 4-5 mm long white filiform beak; pappus hairs 3-4 mm long, white.
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Kalatope id al030511: Another flower, I suppose… I should have measured the leaves and fruit for…
the lower leaves are different.. loved their shape.. Anyway, it is for the sheer pleasure of sharing a beautiful flower like this…

Location Kalatope, Chamba
Altitude 2100 mts
Habit herb
Habitat wild/ periphery of fields
Height 10-12 inches

Could be Lactuca dissecta, but as written earlier height of plant, diam. of head, its length are important for identification. For compositae the fruit size, its crown (pappus) where made of hairs (simple or branched) or scales, and body of fruit whether with narrowed neck or not, its length, and relative length of body and neck are very helpful. I am not asking non-botanists (and don’t expect) to record these but if there is a good close up one fruit (achene) and naked head after the achenes have fallen off, it can always help.


I hope I got the right data this time…

Height of the plant 16 inches (largest I found)
Fruiting body (Is that achene.. the one with the hairy seed pods) 1.5 cm
ball diameter.. the magnifying glass I am using has a scale measuring in millimeters…
the diameter of the flower was 8-9 mm

That is simply great …. If all students are like you, every teacher would be happy. First just for your information, each structure in the globose head is achene. Each achene has broader lower portion called its
body and narrowed upper portion the neck or beak. The hairs at top form pappus. Your plant clearly has neck much longer than body, characteristic of L. dissecta, plants are up to 18 inches tall and flower heads (capitulum) 8-12 mm across. The flower like structure in this family is collection of flowers (inflorescence) called head or capitulum. The achenes usually form a globose head, and the structure which is left after achenes fall off is receptacle. It may be naked or covered with hairs.

    The plant is surely Lactuca dissecta.

…what is this black frame with markings around the flower… is it some kind of measuring marking device?

did you make it?
buy it?
where?
how can I get one or two?
do they come in different sizes?
does fit around the sunshades of the lens front?
lots of questions….
awaiting answers eagerly…because…wonderful if its a measuring device for macro…
being black matt does not shine, and throw off the meter…
small enough to carry around…
PS by the way this flower reminds me of  chicory, .. a  roadside weed in much of northeast wastelands and highway shoulders in NY CT< PA Etc , and in europe… But as … so patiently explained… its a big genus, and a detailed key to id is so very important…

Flower colour is same, but not leaves which are much more rigid in that, heads generally sessile, singly or two or three together, and more importantly achene does not have a beak and pappus of small palea and not long hairs as in this case. That is why I had asked … to send me photographs of fruit.
By the way we had published in 1972 a paper how we can identify composits from achene structure. I will upload it soon.


Here is our paper on use of achene morphology in identification in Compositae
The fruit is strictly a cypsela, but term achene is more commonly used especially in older Floras.
This thread helped me to learn how to create multi-page pdf document using a flat-bed scanner. Perhaps now I can create pdf documents of my other papers also.


Thank you .. for the interest in my photographic innovation, but alas I am not an true innovator… just a borrower of ideas… You can definitely get the device and even order it online from Jodogyan, and on this page (http://www.jodogyan.org/tlmscience ) you’ll see the photo of a linen tester which has 10x magnification and it is just the right size to hold in front of an average point and shoot camera and click some wonderful macros without paying the nikon chaps an arm and a leg (which is what I do since I can’t afford a fancy dslr)
Hope this answers some of your intrigue..


Thank you, I definitely will try and get the linen tester, I just like the idea of a built in marker for size….
its wonderful…   I do use the nikon macro and the built in macro capbility in my prosumer (lighter in weight) sony …. so may not need the 10x, but I surely like the measuring devise…


Not only the measurement capability, …, I was greatly impressed with the depth of focus: every part of achene-its body, ribs on the body, neck, pappus were so clear in the photograph. If all of us have such photographs, identification would be so easy. Great job ….


It was simple. I have a flat bed scanner, simple cano-scan lite which I bought for just Rs. 2500/-, which I use frequently for scanning documents. I knew it can save as pdf document, but did not know how I would send so many single pages. I thought of giving a try, and when I clicked option of pdf document, the default choice was multiple-page document. I scanned a page, pressed next, till I had scanned all the pages. Pressing finish created a mult-ipage document which I uploaded. I have similarly made pdf of all my papers.


By the way, any idea, how they test linen with it?


I can tell you how: one puts the magnifier on the fabric to be tested and counts warps and wefts criss- crossing each other within a given length/sides of a square, say one centimeter or an inch whatever is the standard for the country or century or industry…. as in linen: it is centimeter, cotton fabrics, again centimeters, jute fabrics it used to be inches…. and I think still is….

   and such magnifying lenses come quite handy for quick inspection of fabrics, and be non -destructive… one could count threads even in a shop on the entire roll ….
    how do I know this? i had taken some economic botany classes and some  esoteric knowledge lodged in my memory….ha ha…

Thats interesting and informative. So you mean more the number of threads in 1cm better is the quality!!


no…. just denser… there are 240 count bed sheets and then upto 600 count… quite dense… only practical if you do machine wash otherwise too heavy for the maid to lift and wring out the water….ha ha.. Kota sari would be much less number of threads, wollen suiting would be much higher numbers…  so it  varies based on purpose…


latest working link to the Linen tester
in november 2019. older link is caput

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Lactuca dissecta D. Don, Prodr. fl. nepal. 164. 1825
Annual herb with simple or divaricately branched stems; Lower leaves obovate to ellptic, pinnateipartite with 3-6 pairs of lateral lobes, terminal lobe rhombic; cauline leaves auriculate; heads blue, blue-purple to pale yellow, in corymbose branches; florets 12-18; involucre bracts ovate to linear-lanceolate, outer shorter than inner, purplish-red in fruit; achene brown to blackish 2.5 mm long, 3-ribbed on either side, with 4-5 mm long white filiform beak; pappus hairs 3-4 mm long, white.

Photographed from Bhimtal and Ranikhet.


Thanks … for sharing this Lactuca sp. Your posts are always unique as it is accompanied by the description along with series of beautiful photographs.


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Lactuca dissecta D.Don is a common spring weed in Pantnagar. Flower heads open in first half of the day only and wither later.


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This tender herb with small, light purple flowers was shot from Budher caves road, Chakrata
leaves amplexicaule, long, lobed.. heads in cymes..
wanted to confirm if this can be Lactuca dissecta.. this is the smallest Lactuca I have seen..

Yes it is L.dissecta.



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