Pappus (botany)

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Umbrella-shaped pappus on the fruits of the coltsfoot ( Tussilago farfara )
Construction of a ray floret :
A ovary
B Pappus
C hunchback anthers
D tongue
E stylus with scar zweiästiger

As Pappus ( Greek πάππος Pappos ; grandfather ; to beard ) is defined as the re-formed to hairs, bristles or scales sepals in representatives of the plant family Compositae (Asteraceae). It is also called hair cup or spring cup called.

The pappus tips are also known as pappus rays, which can be branched or unbranched. Length, shape, color and the type of formation and generally the presence of a pappus are important determinants of many sunflower plants. In some taxa such as the dandelion ( Taraxacum ) or the goat beard ( Tragopogon ), the pappus is raised like an umbrella by a stem, one then speaks of a beaked pappus.

As a rule, the pappus is used to spread seeds by the wind ( meteorochory ). In some genera such as the two-toothed tooth ( Bidens ) and the burdock ( Arctium ), it can get caught in the fur of animals or in clothing ( epichory ). It also takes on a protective function for the fruit; a connection with the spread of seeds by ants or the attraction of pollinators is also possible .

But also with the valerians ( Valeriana ), such as B. the real valerian ( Valeriana officinalis ), the genus Centranthus and the species Valerianella hirsutissima in the valerian family , the hair-shaped calyx is called pappus.


  • Joachim W. Kadereit, Christian Körner, Benedikt Kost, Uwe Sonnewald: Strasburger - Textbook of Plant Sciences. Springer Spectrum , 37th completely revised & updated edition, Berlin & Heidelberg 2014. ISBN 978-3-642-54434-7 .
  • Peter Leins: blossom and fruit. Morphology, history of development, phylogeny, function, ecology. E. Schweizerbart'sche Verlagsbuchhandlung, Stuttgart 2000, ISBN 3-510-65194-4 .
  • Rita Lüders: Basic course in plant identification. 7th edition, Quelle & Meyer, Wiebelsheim 2015, ISBN 978-3-494-01615-3 .

Web links

Commons : Pappus (botany)  - Collection of images, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. ^ Theodor CH Cole: Dictionary of Biology Dictionary of Biology: German / English. 4th edition, Springer, 2015, ISBN 978-3-642-55327-1 , p. 202.
  2. S. Mukherjee, B. Nordenstam: Diversity of Pappus structure in some tribes of the Asteraceae. In: Phytotaxonomy. 8, 2008, pp. 32–46, online (PDF), at, accessed on August 9, 2018.
  3. ^ Joachim W. Kadereit , Volker Bittrich: The Families and Genera of Vascular Plants. Vol. XIV, Springer, 2016, ISBN 978-3-319-28532-0 , p. 391.