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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.



Margriet Wetherwax & David C. Tank

Annual, gray- or yellow-green, often becoming red-purple, generally much-branched; roots ± yellow. Leaf: sessile, entire, thread-like to lanceolate or palmately 3–7-lobed, segments narrow. Inflorescence: short dense spike (subtended by bracts), < 2(5) cm or flowers 1, scattered or often clustered but not in spikes (each subtended by outer bract); outer bracts ± leaf-like; inner bract calyx-like (formerly confused with calyx), 0–7-lobed. Flower: calyx sheath-like, generally divided to base abaxially, partially surrounding corolla tube laterally, tip entire or shallowly notched; corolla club-shaped, tubular proximally, expanded laterally; upper corolla lip folded lengthwise, tip rounded, closed, opening directed downwards forming a hood enclosing anthers, style; lower corolla lip <= upper lip, obscurely 3-lobed, middle lobe tightly rolled under, tip distinctly folded inside-out; fertile stamens (2)4, anther sacs generally 2 per stamen, densely hairy at both ends and ciliate along line of dehiscence, unequal in size and placement; style bent near tip, stigma barely exserted. Seed: attached at side; seed coat tight-fitting, netted or irregularly striate.
13 species: western North America. (Greek: club-shaped flower) [Tank et al. 2009 Syst Bot 34:182–197] Close to Orthocarpus, distinguished by inflorescence, calyx, stamens; generally flowers Jul–Sep. Other taxa in TJM (1993) moved to Chloropyron, Dicranostegia.
Unabridged references: [Chuang & Heckard 1986 Syst Bot Monogr 10:1–105; Tank & Olmstead 2008 Amer J Bot 95:608–625]

Key to Cordylanthus

1. Mature corolla generally > 3 × longer than wide; seed netted; especially Great Basin Floristic Province and Desert in sagebrush or juniper scrub

2. Calyx divided to base; corolla ± dusty yellow, often marked maroon ..... C. ramosus

2' Calyx tube 1–4 mm; corolla generally pink to maroon (± yellow)

3. Fertile stamens 2; calyx divided ± 1/3 — Warner Mountains ..... C. capitatus

3' Fertile stamens 4; calyx shallowly notched

4. Plant canescent, not glandular-sticky; outer bracts 3–7-lobed ..... C. eremicus

5. Outer bracts sparsely scabrous, tips thickened, maroon ..... subsp. eremicus

5' Outer bracts distinctly bristly, tips not thickened, green ..... subsp. kernensis

4' Plant densely glandular-sticky; outer bracts generally 3- or 5-lobed

6. Inflorescence a spike, 2–3 cm; corolla lips ± equal; inner bract pinnately lobed; s Modoc Plateau, East of Sierra Nevada ..... C. kingii subsp. helleri

6' Flowers 1 or 2–4 in loose clusters; lower corolla lip << upper; inner bract generally entire; e Desert Mountains ..... C. parviflorus

1' Mature corolla 2–3 × longer than wide; seed finely wavy-striate; especially California Floristic Province in foothill woodland

7. Outer bracts fan-shaped, shallowly 3–7-lobed; inner bract and calyx tips rough-papillate; corolla 8–9 mm, pouch sides yellow — serpentine, North Coast Ranges ..... C. pringlei

7' Outer bracts entire to deeply 3-lobed; inner bract and calyx tips scabrous to puberulent; corolla 10–20 mm, pouch sides ± white

8. Anther sac 1 (+ bearded vestige) per stamen; calyx tube ± 1 mm; outer bracts 3-lobed, < flower — s High Sierra Nevada, Transverse Ranges, Peninsular Ranges ..... C. nevinii

8' Anther sacs 2 per stamen; calyx generally divided to base (except Cordylanthus rigidus); outer bracts entire or 3-lobed, generally >= flower

9. Plant ± bristly (except Cordylanthus rigidus subsp. littoralis), hairs generally not glandular; flowers 5–15 in ± dense clusters; calyx tube 1–2 mm; corolla maroon in U-shape on lower side ..... C. rigidus

10. Outer bract < flower, generally 5–10 mm, middle lobe oblong — s High Sierra Nevada ..... subsp. brevibracteatus

10' Outer bract generally > flower, 10–20 mm, middle lobe linear to lanceolate

11. Middle lobe of outer bract linear, tip wider, notched, thickened, maroon, marginal bristles > 2 × lobe width — Outer South Coast Ranges, Southwestern California ..... subsp. setiger

11' Middle lobe of outer bract generally lanceolate or oblong, tip generally not wider, marginal bristles ± = lobe width

12. Plant puberulent or soft-hairy; outer bract weakly ciliate and puberulent, tip of middle lobe tapered; dunes, c&s Central Coast ..... subsp. littoralis

12' Plant bristly; outer bracts ± scabrous, tip of middle lobe tapered or blunt and notched; especially chaparral, woodland, c&s Sierra Nevada, Central Western California (except n San Francisco Bay Area), Western Transverse Ranges, San Gabriel Mountains ..... subsp. rigidus

9' Plant soft-hairy, becoming glabrous, hairs glandular or not; flowers 1–7 in loose clusters; calyx divided to base; corolla veined, streaked or blotched maroon

13. Stem decumbent, branches ascending < 15 cm; outer bracts 3-lobed near base — serpentine, ne San Francisco Bay Area ..... C. nidularius

13' Stem erect, branches ascending generally > 20 cm; outer bracts entire or 3-lobed in distal 2/3

14. Main stem densely puberulent (partly glandular) and long-soft-hairy; tips of outer bracts (or middle lobes) > 1.5 mm wide, longest hairs 2–3 mm; corolla barely marked maroon ..... C. pilosus

15. Outer bracts entire (tip wider, obtuse to 2-notched); North Coast Ranges, n San Francisco Bay Area ..... subsp. pilosus

15' Outer bracts 3-lobed; Cascade Range Foothills, n&c Sierra Nevada Foothills

16. Outer bracts lobed in distal 1/3, lateral lobes < 3 mm; corolla >= calyx and inner bract ..... subsp. hansenii

16' Outer bracts lobed in proximal 1/2; lateral lobes > 3 mm; corolla < calyx and inner bract ..... subsp. trifidus

14' Main stem ± glabrous to sparsely long-hairy or ± glandular; tips of outer bracts (or middle lobes) < 1.5 mm wide, longest hairs < 2 mm; corolla heavily blotched maroon ..... C. tenuis

17. Stem glabrous or minutely puberulent; leaves (or lobes) thread-like, tightly folded up, generally ± glabrous; serpentine outcrops — s North Coast Ranges

18. Outer bracts entire; stems minutely and sparsely glandular, especially proximal to flowers ..... subsp. brunneus

18' Outer bracts 3-lobed; stems ± glabrous (not glandular proximal to flowers) — sw Outer North Coast Ranges ..... subsp. capillaris

17' Stem generally puberulent and long-hairy, sometimes glandular; leaves (or lobes) linear to ± oblong, flat to channeled, puberulent and generally glandular; generally not on serpentine

19. Flowers 3–7 in dense clusters; outer bracts generally 3-lobed, densely soft-hairy; longest hairs of inner bract > 2 mm; s High Sierra Nevada ..... subsp. barbatus

19' Flowers 1–6 in loose clusters; outer bracts entire or 3-lobed, ± stiff-hairy; longest hairs of inner bract < 1 mm

20. Outer bracts entire ..... subsp. tenuis

20' Outer bracts 3-lobed

21. Bracts and calyx yellow-green, puberulent, weakly glandular; flowers generally 3–6 per cluster — High Cascade Range ..... subsp. pallescens

21' Bracts and calyx green or maroon-tinged, glandular, puberulent and with long, stiff hairs; flowers 1–3 per cluster ..... subsp. viscidus


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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