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Key to families | Table of families and genera

Specimen numbers are hyperlinked to records in the Consortium of California Herbaria data view where possible. Taxa are hyperlinked to entries in the Jepson Interchange via the "[Online Interchange]" link.


Perennial herb with caudex (annual or biennial); hairs stellate, ± sessile. Stem: erect to decumbent or prostrate, simple or branched distally. Leaf: basal generally rosetted, simple, entire to wavy or dentate (pinnately lobed); cauline petioled or sessile, entire to wavy or dentate, base not lobed. Flower: sepals oblong to ovate, erect or spreading, sac-like at base; petals yellow (white or ± purple), widely ovate to spoon-shaped, clawed or not. Fruit: silicle, dehiscent, spheric to ovoid, ellipsoid, oblong, or spectacle-shaped, inflated and bladdery or not, unsegmented, generally not flattened (flattened); stigma entire. Seed: 4–28(40), in 2 rows, wingless (narrowly winged).
105 species: western North America, South America. (Greek: bladder, from inflated fruit) [Al-Shehbaz & O'Kane 2002 Novon 12:319–329]
Unabridged references: [Rollins & Shaw 1973 Harvard Univ Press:1–228]

Key to Physaria

1. Fruit spectacle-shaped, tip deeply notched, strongly inflated, bladdery ..... P. chambersii

1' Fruit spheric to obovoid, ellipsoid, or obcordate, tip obscurely notched or not, generally not inflated or bladdery

2. Annual or biennial, caudex 0 ..... P. tenella

2' Perennial herb, with simple or branched caudex

3. Fruit strongly compressed

4. Fruit compressed perpendicular to septum, obcordate, ± inflated, tip notched to truncate ..... P. cordiformis

4' Fruit compressed parallel to septum, ellipsoid to obovoid, tip acute ..... P. occidentalis subsp. occidentalis

3' Fruit not or only ± compressed

5. Basal, cauline leaves ± similar in shape, width; fruit septum complete; valves hairy inside ..... P. ludoviciana

5' Basal, cauline leaves different in shape, width; fruit septum perforated; valves glabrous to sparsely hairy inside ..... P. kingii

6. Fruit tip truncate or ± notched; valves generally sparsely hairy inside ..... subsp. kingii

6' Fruit tip round; valves glabrous inside

7. Style 6–9 mm; seeds 4–8 ..... subsp. bernardina

7' Style (2)2.5–6 mm; seeds 8–16 ..... subsp. latifolia


Citation for the whole project: Jepson Flora Project (eds.) [year] Jepson eFlora, [accessed on month, day, year]
Citation for an individual treatment: [Author of taxon treatment] [year]. [Taxon name] in Jepson Flora Project (eds.) Jepson eFlora, [URL for treatment]. Accessed on [month, day, year].
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