, sometimes subshrubs
or herbaceous or woody vines
. Leaves basal and cauline, alternate, rarely opposite or whorled
or variously compound
, palmately nerved, rarely penninerved
, with or without stipules. Inflorescence a simple or compound monochasium, dichasium, simple or compound raceme, or flowers solitary. Flowers bisexual
, sometimes unisexual
, rarely zygomorphic, hypogynous. Sepals 3--6 or more, free
, imbricate or sometimes valvate
in bud. Petals present or absent, 2--8 or more, free, usually with nectaries. Stamens numerous
, rarely few, free; filaments
, or extrorse
; sometimes some sterile
stamens becoming staminodes. Carpels numerous or few, rarely 1, free, rarely connate
to various degrees
; ovary with 1 to many ovules. Fruit follicles or achenes, rarely capsules or berries
. Seeds small, with abundant endosperm and minute embryo.
About 60 genera and 2500 species: worldwide, but richly represented in N temperate regions , particularly in E Asia; 38 genera (four endemic) and 921 species (604 endemic) in China.
, from woody rhizomes, caudices, or tuberous
. Leaves basal and cauline, proximal
, distal leaves sessile; cauline leaves alternate. Leaf blade
1-4×-ternately or -pinnately compound
, lanceolate, or linear
, sometimes 3-lobed or more, margins
entire or crenate
. Inflorescences terminal
, sometimes also axillary
, (1-) 2-200-flowered panicles, racemes
, corymbs, umbels, or flowers solitary, to 41 cm; involucres absent or present, involucral bracts
2-3 (these compound, often resembling whorl of 6-9 simple
bracts), leaflike, not closely subtending
flowers. Flowers all bisexual
, bisexual and unisexual
on same plant, or all unisexual with sexes on same or different plants
, radially symmetric
; sepals not persistent
in fruit, 4-10, whitish to greenish yellow or purplish, plane
, lanceolate to reniform
, 1-18 mm; petals absent; stamens 7-30; filaments
or distally dilated
; staminodes absent between stamens and pistils; pistils 1-16, simple; ovule 1 per pistil; style present or absent. Fruits achenes, usually aggregate, sessile or stipitate
, or discoid
, sides prominently veined or ribbed
present or absent, terminal, straight to coiled
, 0-4 mm.
Species 120-200: nearly worldwide, mostly temperate .
Thalictrum is a taxonomically difficult genus that should be carefully researched through additional population-based field studies. Past treatments of Thalictrum have often emphasized leaf characters that are highly variable in most species; they are therefore of poor diagnostic value and not indicative of true relationships . Because of the paucity of field studies and a continuing emphasis on highly variable characters, the literature is replete with names that do not represent distinct entities. Often mixes of character states can be found within a single population; many of the character states used in past studies were neither ecologically nor geographically distinct.
Some species of Thalictrum have been divided into varieties by previous authors . In the absence of carefully collected, supporting evidence from field studies, we are unwilling to perpetuate the use of any infraspecific names .
Characters useful in identifying species of Thalictrum include leaflet shape, degree of dilation of filaments, anther length , shape of anther apex, achene shape and venation patterns , and vestiture (glands and/or hairs ) of leaves and achenes. Leaflets described in this treatment are the central, distalmost of a midstem leaf; proximal and distal leaves are more variable and often not representative of the species. Stigma and filament colors refer to fresh material in the following descriptions .
In Thalictrum species, the stigma extends down the side of the style, so length of style in fruit (beak) includes the stigma.
For many species no reliable characteristics for the identification of staminate material are known. Extensive field work and careful analysis are required to determine if such characteristics exist.
In a narrow strip from southeastern Ontario to Ohio to Louisiana, some individuals of some species in Thalictrum section Leucocoma may lack their normal vestiture. In the absence of glands or pubescence , the differences among species are difficult to describe. The remaining characteristics overlap considerably. The species involved may be identified in the final couplets of the key as follows: if the plant in hand falls into the area of overlap for the first character of the couplet, go on to the next character, and so forth, until a distinguishing character is found. One or more of the characters offered should distinguish the infrequent, problematic individual.
Several species of Thalictrum are used as ornamentals . At least one species, T. aquilegiifolium Linnaeus, occasionally escapes cultivation in Ontario and Quebec and possibly elsewhere. The plant is tall (40-100 cm) ; flowers bisexual, mauve to pink; and achenes few, filiform, 3-winged, stipitate, very small, and hidden at anthesis among the bases of long, rigid stamens.
Numerous alkaloids have been identified from plants of the genus, some with pharmacologic potential. Some exhibit antimicrobial activity; others inhibit growth of tumors or lower blood pressure in mammals.
Species Thalictrum cultratum
Plants 50--120 cm tall, glabrous or pubescent . Stems branched distally. Basal and proximal cauline leaves withered at anthesis . Middle cauline leaves petiolate ; petiole 1--4 cm; leaf blade 3- or 4-pinnate, 9--20 cm; leaflet blade rhombic-obovate, broadly rhombic , or orbicular , 0.5--1(--1.4) × 0.3--1(--1.4) cm, thinly leathery, base rounded or subcordate , apex acute, 3-lobed; lobes entire or 2-toothed; veins raised abaxially. Inflorescence paniculate . Pedicel slender, 4--14 mm. Sepals deciduous, greenish white, narrowly elliptic , 3--4 mm. Stamens many, 6--8 mm; filament filiform ; anther narrowly oblong , 2--2.6 mm, apex mucronate . Carpels 4--9. Achenes sessile; body hemiobovoid, ca. 3.5 mm; veins ca. 8. Fl. Jun--Jul. [source]
Scrub , slopes , wet meadows, damp rocky ledges; 1700--3800 m (Ref. 110059).
- Whittaker & Margulis,1978
- Haeckel, 1866
- Cavalier-Smith, 1981
- Sinnott, 1935 ex Cavalier-Smith, 1998
- Vascular Plants
- Kenrick & Crane, 1997
- Brongniart, 1843
- Takhtajan Ex Reveal, 1992
- Takhtajan Ex Reveal, 1992
- Dumortier, 1829
- Adans., 1763, nom. cons.
- boutons d'or, buttercups
- Subfamily: Thalictroideae ()
- Family: Ranunculaceae () - Adans., 1763, nom. cons. - boutons d'or, buttercups
- Order: Ranunculales () - Dumortier, 1829
- Superorder: Ranunculanae () - Takhtajan Ex Reveal, 1992
- Subclass: Ranunculidae () - Takhtajan Ex Reveal, 1992
- Class: Spermatopsida () - Brongniart, 1843
- Infraphylum: Radiatopses () - Kenrick & Crane, 1997
- Subphylum: Euphyllophytina ()
- Phylum: Tracheophyta () - Sinnott, 1935 ex Cavalier-Smith, 1998 - Vascular Plants
- Subkingdom: Viridaeplantae () - Cavalier-Smith, 1981
- Kingdom: Plantae () - Haeckel, 1866 - Plants
Thalictrum deciternatum B. Boivin • Thalictrum yui B. Boivin.
An accepted name
in the RHS
Place of publication : Pl. asiat. rar. 2:26. 1831
Name verified on 17-Jan-1997 by ARS Systematic Botanists. Last updated: 11-Feb-2005
Members of the genus Thalictrum
ZipcodeZoo has pages for 62 species, subspecies, varieties, forms, and cultivars in this genus:
T. actaeifolium (Baneberry-Leafed Meadow Rue) · T. alpinum (Alpine Meadow-Rue) · T. aquilegifolium (Columbine Meadow Rue) · T. aquilegifolium 'Album' (Columbine Meadow Rue) · T. aquilegifolium 'Thundercloud' (Columbine Meadow Rue) · T. aquilegiifolium 'Purpureum' (Columbine Meadow Rue) · T. aquilegiifolium 'Sparkler' (Columbine Meadow Rue) · T. arkansanum (Arkansas Meadow-Rue) · T. clavatum (Mountain Meadow-Rue) · T. cooleyi (Cooley's Meadow-Rue) · T. coreanum (China Meadow Rue) · T. coriaceum (Maid of the Mist) · T. dasycarpum (Purple Meadow-Rue) · T. debile (Southern Meadow-Rue) · T. delavayi (Chinese Meadow Rue) · T. delavayi 'Alba' (Chinese Meadow Rue) · T. delavayi 'Hewitt's Double' (Hewitt's Double Chinese Meadow Rue) · T. dioicum (Early Meadow-Rue) · T. dioicum var. coriaceum (Quicksilver-Weed) · T. dioicum var. stipitatum (Quicksilver-Weed) · T. fendleri (Fendler Meadowrue) · T. fendleri var. fendleri (Fendler Meadowrue) · T. fendleri var. polycarpum (Fendler's Meadow-Rue) · T. fendleri var. wrightii (Wright's Meadow-Rue) · T. filamentosum var. tenerum (Meadow Rue) · T. filamentosum var. tenerum 'Heronswood Form' ('heronswood Meadow Rue) · T. flavum (Common Meadow Rue) · T. flavum flavum (Yellow Meadow-Rue) · T. flavum glaucum (Meadow Rue) · T. flavum 'Illuminator' (Meadow Rue) · T. glaucum (Meadow Rue) · T. heliophilum (Cathedral Bluff Meadow-Rue) · T. hultenii (Hulten's Meadow-Rue) · T. kiusianum (Dwarf Meadow Rue) · T. lucidum (Shining Meadow Rue) · T. macrostylum (Piedmont Meadow-Rue) · T. minus (Lesser Meadow Rue) · T. minus minus (Hulten's Meadow-Rue) · T. minus 'Adiantifolium' (Lesser Meadow Rue) · T. mirabile (Little Mountain Meadow-Rue) · T. nigromontanum (Black Hills Meadow-Rue) · T. occidentale (Western Meadow-Rue) · T. occidentale var. macounii (Western Meadowrue) · T. occidentale var. occidentale (Western Meadowrue) · T. occidentalis (Meadow Rue) · T. polyganum (Tall Meadow Rue) · T. pubescens (King of the Meadow) · T. reniforme (Chinese Meadowrue) · T. reniforme 'Grandiflorum' (Chinese Meadowrue) · T. revolutum (Waxyleaf Meadow Rue) · T. rochebruneanum 'Lavender Mist' (Lavender Mist Meadow Rue) · T. rochebrunianum (Lavender Mist Meadow Rue) · T. rochebrunianum'Lavender Mist' (Lavender Mist Meadow Rue) · T. sparsiflorum (Fewflower Meadow-Rue) · T. sparsiflorum sparsiflorum (Fewflower Meadow-Rue) · T. sparsiflorum var. richardsonii (Richarson's Meadow-Rue) · T. sparsiflorum var. saximontanum (Fewflower Meadow-Rue) · T. texanum (Houston Meadow-Rue) · T. thalictroides (Anemonella) · T. venulosum (Veiny Meadow-Rue) · T. 'Black Stockings' (Meadow Rue) · T. 'Elin' (Thalictrum)
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- Annals of the Royal Botanic Garden, Calcutta. 5 1895-1896 Calcutta: Bengal Secretariat Book Depot, 1888- url p. 72.
- Bulletin of the British Museum (Natural History). London: The Museum, 1951-1992. url p. 260.
- Contributions from the United States National Herbarium 45 2003 Washington, D.C.: Smithsonian Institution Press, 1890- url p. 334, p. 584.
- Hand-list of herbaceous plants cultivated in the Royal Botanic Gardens. London, Printed for H. M. Stationery Off. by Darling, 1902. url p. 1135.
- Notes from the Royal Botanic Garden, Edinburgh. 7 1912-1913 Edinburgh: H. M. Stationery Off. url p. 124, p. 230.
- Plants of the Punjab: a descriptive key to the flora of the Punjab, North-west Frontier Province, and Kashmir / by C.J. Bamber. Lahore: Supt. Govt. Printing, Punjab, 1916. url p. 272, p. 404.
- Plants of the Punjab; a descriptive key to the flora of the Punjab, North-west Frontier Province and Kashmir. LahorePrinted by The Superintendent Government Printing1916 url p. 272.
- The Journal of the Bombay Natural History Society. Bombay: The Society, url p. 1058.
- The Journal of the Linnean Society. Botany. 36 1903-05 London: the Society: Longman, Green, Longman, Roberts & Green: ||Williams and Norgate, 1865-1968. url p. 675.
- The flora of British India /By J. D. Hooker assisted by various botanists. Published under the authority of the secretary of state for India in council. London: L. Reeve, 1875-97. url p. 11.
- Wallich, N. Plantae Asiaticae rariores, or, Descriptions and figures of a select number of unpublished East Indian plants /by N. Wallich. 2 1831 London: Treuttel and Wu?rtz, 1830-32. url p. 26.
- Boivin, B. 1944. American Thalictra and their Old World allies. Rhodora 46: 337-377, 391-445, 453-487.
- Boivin, B. 1948. Key to Canadian species of Thalictra. Canad. Field-Naturalist 62: 169-170.
- Lecoyer, J. C. 1885. Monographie du genre Thalictrum. Bull. Soc. Roy. Bot. Belgique 24: 78-324.
- Park, M. M. 1992. A Biosystematic Study of Thalictrum Section Leucocoma (Ranunculaceae). Ph.D. dissertation. Pennsylvania State University.
- Tamura, M. 1992. A new classification of the family Ranunculaceae. Acta Phytotax. Geobot. 43: 53-58.
- Tamura, M. 1968. Morphology, ecology, and phylogeny of the Ranunculaceae. VIII. Sci. Rep. Coll. Gen. Educ. Osaka Univ. 17: 41-56.
- Brands, S.J. (comp.) 1989-present. The Taxonomicon. Universal Taxonomic Services, Zwaag, The Netherlands. Accessed January 9, 2012.
Accessed through GBIF Data Portal November 21, 2007:
- Harvard University Herbaria, Harvard University Herbaria
- Utah State University, USU-UTC Specimen Database
- Biodiversity Heritage Library NamebankID: 3479073
- Global Biodiversity Information Facility Taxonkey: 15813477
- Globally Unique Identifier: urn:lsid:ipni.org:names:714354-1
- GRIN Nomen Number: 36427
- Zipcode Zoo Species Identifier: 1102414
- Wencai Wang, Dezhi Fu, Liang-Qian Li, Bruce Bartholomew, Anthony R. Brach, Bryan E. Dutton, Michael G. Gilbert, Yuichi Kadota, Orbélia R. Robinson, Michio Tamura, Michael J. Warnock, Guanghua Zhu & Svetlana N. Ziman "Ranunculaceae". in Flora of China Vol. 6 Page 133. Published by Science Press (Beijing) and Missouri Botanical Garden Press. Online at EFloras.org. [back]
- Marilyn M. Park & Dennis Festerling Jr. "Thalictrum". in Flora of North America Vol. 3 Page 258. Oxford University Press. Online at EFloras.org. [back]