Hawaiian Native Plant Genera - Asteraceae

Wilkesia A. Gray

BB or BV

*Argyroxiphium, Dubautia, and Wilkesia are apparently derived from a single colonization by an allopolyploid  intergeneric hybrid of North American affinity.

Wilkesia is a Hawaiian endemic genus of two perennial species occurring on Kauai.  Plants mostly sparingly branched or unbranched, forming one or more rosettes elevated on woody stems, in flower occasionally up to about 5 m in height; leaves liguloid, in whorls of 7-15, basally coalesced and sheathing the stem for 1-6.5 cm.  Heads discoid;  phyllaries 0; receptacular chaff scales forming a ring encircling the disk florets, the margins fused into a cup-like false involucre; disk florets mostly 30-225, perfect, the corollas cream-colored, proximally tubular, distally 5-lobed, the lobes minutely setulose; anthers yellow; disk cypselae mostly straight, sparsely to moderately ascending-sericeous, 4.5-7 mm long, the pappus uniseriate, comprising mostly 6-11 rigid, very shortly fimbriate-margined, lanceolate scales 1-3.5 mm long.  The chromosome number is n = 14.

Gallery of Species

W. gymnoxiphium

W. hobdyi

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