E-Flora BC: Electronic Atlas of the Flora of British Columbia

Centaurea nigrescens Willd.
short-fringed knapweed (Tyrol knapweed)
Asteraceae (Aster family)

Introduction to Vascular Plants

© Jamie Fenneman  Email the photographer   (Photo ID #7552)

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Distribution of Centaurea nigrescens
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Species Information

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Perennial herb from a taproot; stems erect, branched, glabrous or somewhat sparsely long-hairy, 0.4-1.0 m tall.
Basal leaves oblanceolate to elliptic, base tapering into the stalk, deeply to shallowly lobed or irregularly pinnately cut, glabrous or often lightly hairy below, up to 15 cm long and 3 cm wide; stem leaves lanceolate, unstalked, reduced upwards.
Heads discoid, numerous, solitary at the ends of ascending branches; disk flowers reddish-purple, the marginal ones, if present, enlarged, lobed and conspicuous; involucres 12-15 mm tall, 8-11 mm wide; involucral bracts cylindric, taller than wide, with slightly enlarged, rounded, tattered to comb-like, darker appendages at the tips, these wider than the bracts.
Achenes grey or light brown, 3.2-3.5 mm long; pappus reduced to small scales or lacking.

Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia

Habitat / Range

Mesic roadsides and fields in the lowland zone; rare in SW BC (Saanich Peninsula, Vancouver Island) and SC BC (Mara Lake area); introduced from Europe.

Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia


The climate type for this species, as reported in the: "British Columbia plant species codes and selected attributes. Version 6 Database" (Meidinger et al. 2008), is not evaluated, unknown or variable.

Synonyms and Alternate Names

Centaurea debeauxii subsp. thuillieri Dostál
Centaurea dubia subsp. vochinensis (Bernh. ex Rchb.) Hayek
Centaurea pratensis Thuill., nom. illeg., non Salisb.
Centaurea vochinensis Bernh. ex Rchb.

Taxonomic and Nomenclatural Links

Additional Photo Sources

General References