8. Nigella L., Sp. Pl. 534. 1753. Gen. Pl. ed. 5:238.1754, Boiss., Fl. Or. 64-70.1867, Krasheninikov in Komarov, Fl. URSS. 7:62.1937, Davis, Fl. Turk. 1:98-105.1965, Strid in Opera Bot. 28:1-169.1970, Qureshi & Chaudhri in Pak. Syst. 4(1-2):30.1988.
HARALD RIEDL and YASIN J. NASIR
Naturhistorisches Museum, Botanische Abteilung, Wien, Austria.
National Herbarium, Pakistan Agricultural Research Council, Islamabad, Pakistan.
Annual slender plants with strongly dissected leaves and filiform leaf-segments. Flowers regular. Sepals petaloid, blue or whitish, acute, deciduous. Petals nectiferous, 5-10, bilabiate, the outer lips deeply incised. Stamens numerous. Follicles 2-8(-14), more or less coherent, rostrate with long styles, often inflated. Seeds several in each unilocular follicle.
A genus of c. 20 species distributed from the western Mediterranean to Asia. No species are found wild in Pakistan, but at least two representatives are widely cultivated and also reported from this area. Both belong to the group with coherent, strongly inflated follicles.
Species not seen
Qureshi & Chaudhri (Pak. Syst. 40-2): (p.31 & 33.1988), mention the following two introduced species which I have not seen.
Nigella orientalis L., Sp. Pl. 534.1753.
Flowers yellow, with lower lip of petals villous. Capsule flattened.
Type: Described from Aleppo, Syria.
Distribution: Caucasus, Turkestan, N. Iran.
Nigella integriolia Regel in Bull. Soc. Mosc. 43:246.1883.
Lower leaves entire, upper 3-5-lobed. Flowers blue. Petals strap-l ike, 2-fid at tip. Carpels 3.
Type: Described from Tadzikistan, C. Asia (LE).
Distribution: C. Asia, Iran. Introduced elsewhere.