Dipsacus is a genus of ca. 15 Old World species, mainly distributed in Eurasia and the Mediterranean region (some in Africa and Asia). All species are more or less alike. However, a few are distinguished by shortly petiolate cauline leaves (not sessile and connate as in most other species) and globose flower heads. These are sometimes segregated as a distinct genus, Virga Hill. (see for instance Štepánek & Holub 1997) but this point of view is not followed by other recent taxonomists nor is it supported by molecular phylogenetic studies.
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