Monographs Details: Astragalus lentiginosus var. chartaceus M.E.Jones
Authors:Rupert C. Barneby
Authority: Barneby, Rupert C. 1964. Atlas of North American Astragalus. Mem. New York Bot. Gard. 13(2): 597-1188.
Description:Variety Description - Perennial, thinly strigulose with subappressed hairs, the herbage bicolored, the rather thick-textured leaflets yellowish-green and glabrous above; stems rather slender, prostrate or weakly ascending, 1-1.5 dm. long, flexuous distally; leaves 3-6 cm. long, with 9-15 broadly obovate-emarginate or obcordate, flat leaflets 6-12 mm. long; peduncles 1-2 cm. long, much shorter than the leaf; racemes shortly 5-8-flowered, the axis not elongating, less than 1 cm. long in fruit; flowers known only from withered fragments; calyx ± 6.5 mm., the teeth ± 2 mm. long; banner ±16 mm., wings ± 14.5 mm., keel ±13 mm. long; pod broadly lance- or obliquely ovoid-acuminate, moderately inflated, 2-2.8 cm. long, 8-13 mm. in diameter, the incurved, lance-acuminate, unilocular beak 5-8 mm. long, the glabrous valves becoming stiffly papery, stramineous.
Distribution and Ecology - Clay flats, ± 5500 feet, apparently rare and local, known only from the type collection in the San Pitch Valley, Sanpete County, Utah.—Not mapped.—May to early July.
Discussion:Until adequate material of var. chartaceus, including fresh young flowers, becomes available, the status of the variety and its relationships within the species-complex must remain quite doubtful. Jones (1923, p. 125) listed it as a synonym of var. diphysus, regarding it, however, as a form intergradient to the Nevadan var. latus. It resembles the latter in its very short peduncles, but differs in the strongly beaked, apically unilocular pod. It is easily distinguished from var. salinus, to which Rydberg (1929, p. 411) reduced it, by its substantially larger flower. It appears to differ from the very similar but allopatric var. platyphyllidius in its purple flower, but as the petals are known only from withered fragments, this difference may not be a real one. The sympatric, purple-flowered var. araneosus has a very similar pod but differs in aspect because of the more numerous leaflets and flowers.
Utah United States of America North America