Page author: Don Knoke
Carthamus tinctorius
safflower
WTU specimens
Other herbaria

Distribution: Escaped from cultivation in many western and mid-western states.

Habitat: Disturbed sites.

Flowers: May - August

Origin: Introduced from the Mediterranean region, usually a waif

Conservation Status: Not of concern

Description:
General:

Glabrous annuals 30-100 cm. tall, the stems straw-colored, erect, branched.

Leaves:

Leaves alternate, all cauline, dark green, the blades lanceolate to elliptic or ovate, 2-8.5 cm. long, veiny, shiny, the margins dentate with minutely spine-tipped teeth.

Flowers:

Involucres ovoid, 20-40 mm. in diameter; outer involucral bracts spreading to reflexed, 1.5-2 times longer than the inner, with terminal appendages minutely spine-toothed; corollas all tubular, yellow to orange-red, 20-30 mm. long, the throats abruptly expanded; anthers yellow to red; pappus of scales 1-4 mm. long or wanting.

Fruits:

Achenes white, 7-9 mm. long, slightly roughened.

Accepted Name:
Carthamus tinctorius L.
Publication: Sp. Pl. 2: 830. 1753. 1753.

Synonyms & Misapplications:
(none provided)
Additional Resources:

PNW Herbaria: Specimen records of Carthamus tinctorius in the Consortium of Pacific Northwest Herbaria database.

WA Flora Checklist: Carthamus tinctorius checklist entry.

E-Flora BC: Carthamus tinctorius atlas page.

CalPhotos: Carthamus tinctorius photos.

USDA Plants: Carthamus tinctorius information.

7 photographs:
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