Description from Flora of China
Herbs biennial or short lived perennial, glabrous. Taproot tuberous, fusiform, elongate or cylindrical. Stem usually branched above, base with or without papery remnant sheaths. Basal leaves petiolate, narrowly sheathing; blade 2–4-pinnate; ultimate segments linear or lanceolate. Stem leaves gradually reduced upward. Umbels compound, terminal. Calyx teeth obsolete, rarely present, narrowly triangular. Petals broadly obovate, white, rarely pinkish or purplish, midvein yellow or yellow-green, base cuneate, with an inflexed apex. Stylopodium conic; styles recurved. Fruit oblong-ellipsoid or oblong-ovoid, slightly laterally compressed, glabrous; ribs 5, filiform, prominent; vittae 1(–3) in each furrow, 2–4 on commissure. Seed face plane. Carpophore 2-parted.
This widespread genus has very uncertain limits.
The following species have been described from Chinese material, but are imperfectly known as no specimens have been seen or the specimens are inadequate.
Carum seselifolium H. Wolff (Repert. Spec. Nov. Regni Veg. 27: 303. 1930), described from Shanxi (“Mienshan, Shuiwangping,” 1500–2400 m, K. A. H. Smith 6531 & 7827, syntypes, GB).
Carum takenakae Kitagawa (J. Jap. Bot. 26: 166. 1951 [“takenakai”]), described from Hebei (“Hsiaowutaishan” [Xiaowutai Shan], K. Takenaka 88, holotype, T).
Carum wolffianum Fedde ex H. Wolff (Repert. Spec. Nov. Regni Veg. 27: 303. 1930), described from Jilin (C. C. Chien 123, holotype, unlocalized).
About 20 species: N temperate zone; four species (one endemic) in China.
(Authors: Pu Fading (溥发鼎 Pu Fa-ting); Mark F. Watson)