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Pakistan | Family List | Pakistan V. 202 | Iridaceae | Crocus

1. Crocus korolkowii Regel ex Maw in Gard. Chron. n.s. 13: 531. 1880; Boiss., Fl. Or. 5: 109. 1884; B. Fedtsch. in Kom., Fl. U.S.S.R. 4: 387. 1968 (English transl.); R.R. Stewart, Ann. Cat. Vasc. Pl. W. Pak. Kashm. 62. 1972; Wendelbo & B. Mathew in Rech. f., Fl. Iran. 112: 7. 1975; B. Mathew, Crocus: 93. 1982. (Fig. 6, A-C).

S. I. Ali & Brian Mathew

Crocus korolkowii

Credit: P. Furse

Corm 1-2 cm in diameter, subglobose; outer tunics splitting into many parts, each with separate parallel fibres, inner tunics membranous. Cataphylls 3-5, white, sometimes with brownish, greenish or purplish veins at the tip. Leaves synanthous (7-) 10-20 ( 0.1-0.25 cm, green glabrous or subscabrid at the margins. Inflorescence 1-3-5- flowered cyme. Bract and bracteoles exerted from the cataphylls, c. 4-10 cm long. Flowers fragrant, vernal. Perianth tube (3-) 5-10 (-13) cm, yellow, purplish or bronze; segments 6, in 2 whorls subequal or inner slightly shorter and less acute, 2-3.5 ( 0.6-1.2 cm, elliptic to oblanceolate, subacute to obtuse. Stamens 3, filaments 4-6 mm long, glabrous or somewhat pubescent at the base, anthers 8-13 mm long, yellow. Style as long as or longer than the upper tip of the anthers, divided into 3 elongated stigmatic arms, terminating into expanded pipillose stigmas. Capsule 1.2-2.1 cm long, cylindrical, carried at or just below the ground level of maturity. Seeds c. 3 mm long, subglobose or ellipsoid or ( trigonous, reddish brown, 2n=20.

Fl. Per.: February-March.

Syntypes: In montibus Karatavicis prope Boroldai, Korolkow (LE); in Kokiniae valle flurrii Sarawschan in montibus Aksai, Samarkand Fedtschenko (LE); inter Tashkent et Karakati ad rivum Kly in solo argilloso, Korolkow & Krause (LE).

Distribution: Pakistan (Chitral), N. and E. Afghanistan, Uzbekistan, Tadjikistan, Russia (northwards to Kara Tau mountains) (B. Mathew, l.c.).

An important ornamental plant in cold regions; it can be grown in sunny rock gardens. The flower colour variation with the external colour varying from nearly yellow to biscuit-coloured through all degrees of greyish, blackish-brown bronze or purplish brown to entirely deep bronze (B. Mathew, l.c.) is probably the main virtue.


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