Sunday, 6 March 2005

Meconopsis sinomaculata

Photographer : Martin Walsh


A newly described species from Sichuan and Qinghai. related to M. horridula group. The leaves are less bristly and much smaller. It has expanded bases to the filaments as does M. henricii – a feature unique in Meconopsis and clearly these two species are closely related and from similar areas of China. The flowers with pale anthers are borne singly on long scapes up to 45 cms. and open in an upright position and are pale mauve with a dark purple-crimson base on each petal and is uniquely like some of the true poppies in this respect. Most plants have one very large flower but occasionally 2 or 3. Growing with M. punicea and M. quintuplinervia in scrub and hybrids adjacent may be with either though a cross with a member of the M. horridula group is less likely.

M. barbiseta was left out from the original list. It was described in Acta Phytotax. Sin. 17(4) 113 by Wu and Chuang. Exactly how this plant fits in is not clear. It was described as perennial which given the description seems unlikely. Spathulate basal leaves are covered in yellow bristles and the plant bears a single flower on a stout stalk with six blue/purple petals 5cms across and cream coloured anthers. The images in the link below are very similar to some taken by Martin Walsh and illustrated in M. lancifolia. Sounds very like M. henrici. It occurs in Quighai close the Sichuan and Gansu borders - see map for M. sinomaculata.

Below is a link to a site with a number of images of Chinese species and good descriptions and maps. The images under M. barbiseta make it clear that this is very close to M. sinomaculata showing variations on the dark purple pigment. In which case this name would have precedence over the later name given by C. Grey-Wilson. The webmaster still has very vague doubts that these plants may be hybrids.


Map Location

View Meconopsis World sinomaculata in a larger map