DixPix Photographs

     

SOUTH CORDILLERA

 
     
  Flora: ASTERACEAE- Daisy Like Flowers  

The ASTER or SUNFLOWER FAMILY is known either as ASTERACEAE, or by the older and more descriptive name COMPOSITAE.  It is a huge family, something like 23,000 species globally.  Although the orchid family has more species, the asters are more prominent, especially in temperate climates.  The family is renown both for its variety of garden flowers and for its variety of widespread weeds.

There have been a very great number of Asteraceae species described in the Southern Cordillera, and much confusion.  For purposes of this web site, the family has been rather roughly divided into six pages, namely Cluster Flowers, Daisy Like, Dandelion Like, Senecios and Kin, Sunflower Like, and finally Thistles and Vines.  This does not follow more formal and complex methods of dividing the family.

Feverfew, Tanacetum (or Chrysanthemum) parthenium, is of Eurasian origin.  It has been introduced widely in the southern Cordillera, due to its extensive use in traditional medicine, especially in treating aches and fevers. Click to see big picture (640x427 pixels; 121 KB)
Matricaria chamomilla or (M. recutita) is the plant most usually called Chamomile (or Camomile), but sometimes referred to as German Chamomile.  It is famous as a tea or other folk medicine applications, and has been widely introduced around the world. Click to see big picture (566x480 pixels; 160 KB)
In Spanish, Chamomile is often called Chamomilla, but in the southern Cordillera the term Manzanilla is more common, and it is used in Chile to make a very tasty liquor. Click to see big picture (640x408 pixels; 115 KB)
Matricaria matricarioides may be of the same genus as chamomile, but could not look much different.  It is known as Pineapple Weed due to its smell when crushed, and must have invaded south and central Chile and Argentina simply as a weed. Click to see big picture (534x480 pixels; 89 KB)
Then there is Matricaria perforata known as Scentless Mayweed, looking very much like Anthemis cotula called Stinking Mayweed or Dog Fennel.  Unfortunately odors are hard to tell from photographs.  Both are misplaced Eurasians.  Tripleuospermum inoderatum to some taxonomists. Click to see big picture (640x376 pixels; 133 KB)
In the region north of Santiago, this mayweed-like species is fairly common,
Finally an endemic, Bahia ambrosioides, native to northern and central Chile.  The most common names are Manzanilla Cimarrona and Chamiza. Click to see big picture (571x480 pixels; 131 KB)
A closer look at the Chamiza flower. Click to see big picture (633x480 pixels; 103 KB)
Back to the invasives, another widely successful weed, best known as the Ox-eye Daisy (Leucanthemum vulgare).  It has largely become a wide ranging plague because people insist on using it as a garden flower. Click to see big picture (640x352 pixels; 81 KB)
Chiliotrichum diffusum is a patagonian species and is seen here in southern Chile.  The local name is Fachine.
A closer view of the Fachine flowers. The species may be found in both southern Chile and Argentina.
Again in Patagonia, near Cerro Castillo, we find a white species with very little in the way of leaves.  Unidentified.
Erigeron karwinskianus is usually called the Mexican Daisy.  It has been introduced therefrom into central and southern Chile. Click to see big picture (640x455 pixels; 97 KB)
And in the same area is the small but invasive Lawn Daisy or Cutleaf Daisy, Bellis perennis. Click to see big picture (462x480 pixels; 120 KB)
From the high mountains of central Chile, an unidentified species. Click to see big picture (476x480 pixels; 138 KB)
This retiring herb from the Valley of the Explorers in patagonian Chile turns out to be Symphyotrichum vahlii var. vahlii.  It is endemic to Patagonia.
According to the Botanical Gardens at UBC, this is Erigeron andicola, which normally graces the central and southern Andes. Click to see big picture (640x450 pixels; 171 KB)
Others seem to envision Erigeron Andicola as a taller plant, such as these at the head of the Maule River in the Chilean Andes. erigeron
And while up in the Andes, watch for the wind whipping this daisy about on long, thin, red stems.
Again in the mountains, but this time in Peru near Huaraz, Werneria nubigena, more ore less. Click to see big picture (575x480 pixels; 115 KB)
Apparently the real Werneria nubigena has thinner leaves, as in this alpine flower from slightly farther north.  Note the flower-within-flower effect.  werneria
Also in Peru, from over 4000 meters in the Yauyos Range, this is likely either Werneria sp. or a Chaetanthera. Chaetanthera
One more white daisy, this one with unusual leaves, from the Chilean coast near Los Molles. Click to see big picture (452x480 pixels; 104 KB)
The Bidens genus is widely known as Beggar Ticks for its infamous burrs.  This is likely one of four varieties of B. Pilosa, sometimes called Amteco Burr. Click to see big picture (640x424 pixels; 97 KB)
Bidens aurea is of Mexican origin, but has become common through much of Chile as a weed by the name of Falso Te.  The petals seem to bleach inward with time. Click to see big picture (640x327 pixels; 67 KB)
Bidens andicola, on the other hand is a more alpine species, as the Andes name would suggest.  Here it is in the mountains of central Peru. Bidens andicola
Switching to Patagonian Argentina, Brachyclados caespitosus approx. in Chubut Province . Click to see big picture (640x472 pixels; 182 KB)
And from the same area, a mat forming Leuceria?? Click to see big picture (531x480 pixels; 143 KB)
From the Melon Pass in Chile, this small species with distinctive petals.
Back to the Europeans.  Known as the Garland Chrysanthemum, or in its adopted sectors of Chile as Manzanillon, this likely got its entry visa due to its edible greens, in fact it is well appreciated in oriental cooking.  It varies from yellow to white, and the latin name is Chrysanthemum coronarium. Click to see big picture (622x480 pixels; 114 KB)
A look at the full Manzanillon plant, with both colors of flowers from the coast of Chile's Norte Chico. manzanillon
Helenium glaucum is a species of central Chile, where it is one of the species known as Manzanilla.  This one is from near Curacavi.
Central Chile also hosts Helenium aromaticum, appreciated as an aid to digestion.  It is related to sneezeweed, but in Chile has been given the name of Manzanilla del Cerro Click to see big picture (399x480 pixels; 76 KB)
Originally from South Africa, Cotula coronopifolia has naturalized widely, as a result of being able to colonize areas of brackish water, here at the Chilean beach town of Bucalemu.  Known internationally as Brass Buttons, it is locally just called Cotula. cotula
Calendula officinalis was undoubtedly imported for its medical properties, and has taken hold in southern Chile and Argentina.  Known as Scotch Marigold or simply Calendula, this edible plant is used as an antiseptic, an anti-inflamatory and as a dye. Click to see big picture (407x480 pixels; 75 KB)

In Autumn, some roadsides in the San Juan area of Argentina are enlivened with clumps of bright yellow daisies, with dark, thread-like foliage.  These are likely Thymophylla (ex. Dyssodia) pentachaeta, a native which shares its range with North America, where it is known as Dogweed among other terms.

Click to see big picture (284x480 pixels; 100 KB)
Gutierrezia spathulata, according to KEW Gardens.  Native to central and southern Argentina. Click to see big picture (406x480 pixels; 102 KB)
An unidentified, black-centered species from wet areas near the Salto de Laja in Chile. Click to see big picture (640x396 pixels; 125 KB)
This is likely the tenuifolia variety of Chaetanthera chilensis, from the high Andes of central Chile.  It and similar species tend to be called Chinitas. Click to see big picture (640x414 pixels; 154 KB)
This is likely another variety of Chaetanthera chilensis. Click to see big picture (640x361 pixels; 114 KB)
A coastal species from near Los Vilos. Click to see big picture (640x471 pixels; 142 KB)
Taking the form of a mat plant, Werneria pygmaea manages to bloom at over 5000 meters altitude in the Chila range of southern Peru.  It is actually a widespread species in the high country of the southern Cordillera.
A white mat plant on Chile's Volcan Villarica.  This is Belloa chilensis, although some prefer Lucilia araucana.  You might tread on this species in the mountains of southern Chile and adjacent Argentina.
In the high Famatina Range of La Rioja Province, Argentina, this is known as the Estrella del Cordillera.  Apparently the latin handle rolls out as Xenophyllum incisum var. pubescens, a handsome shrub endemic to the Andes of northwestern Argentina. xenophyllum
A white-flowered Chaetanthera just starting to open, in the Famatima Range of La Rioja Province, Argentina. Click to see big picture (580x480 pixels; 136 KB)
This is known as Paposo, high on a mountain of the same name in San Juan Province, Argentina.  Chaetanthera sphaeroidalis approx.  Eating it is rumored to assist with "puna", the problems of adapting to high altitude. Click to see big picture (640x473 pixels; 178 KB)
At over 5000 m. on the slopes of Volcan Llullaillaco in Salta Province, this little herb is at the limit of life.  It is known as Flor de Puna, and is also rumored to help with altitude if eaten. Click to see big picture (576x480 pixels; 107 KB)
Another alpine flower, from the Aija area of central Peru.  The complex flower suggest that this is some silver-leaf species of Paranephelius.
This appears to be a more mature Paranephelius, which has dropped its ray flowers, clearly showing the unusually large disc flowers of this genus.
An unidentified plant from the mountains in La Rioja Province. Click to see big picture (640x462 pixels; 155 KB)
Sprouting from the rocks of the Famatina Range in Argentina. Click to see big picture (640x440 pixels; 86 KB)
Finally an unidentified pink micro-aster which adorns the forest floor in the Parral area of Chile. Click to see big picture (594x480 pixels; 127 KB)