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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.


Annual, perennial herb. Stem: erect or prostrate. Leaf: cauline, opposite, sessile to short-petioled. Inflorescence: raceme, terminal or axillary, or flowers 1 in axils; bracts small, alternate. Flower: sepals generally 4(5), ± free, generally unequal; corolla ± radial, ± rotate, generally 4-lobed, tube << lobes, upper lobe wide (perhaps formed by fusion of upper pair), blue or violet to white; stamens 2, exserted; stigma unlobed. Fruit: flattened perpendicular to septum, generally obcordate, loculicidal and septicidal.
± 250 species: northern temperate, especially Eurasia. (Named for Saint Veronica) Veronica beccabunga L., Veronica chamaedrys L. not in California; Veronica filiformis Sm., Veronica hederifolia L. occasionally as lawn weeds. Veronica biloba L., native to eastern Europe, Asia, a waif in southern Sierra Nevada Foothills, Modoc Plateau, differs from Veronica persica in ways including shorter styles (< 1 mm).
Unabridged references: [Albach et al. 2005 Amer J Bot 92:297–315; Olmstead et al. 2001 Amer J Bot 88:348–361]

Key to Veronica

1. Racemes axillary; herbage generally glabrous; perennial herb

2. Leaves petioled ..... V. americana

2' Leaves sessile (proximal rarely short-petioled)

3. Racemes alternate; leaf lance-linear, length generally >> 5 × width; fruit deeply notched ..... V. scutellata

3' Racemes opposite; leaf elliptic or lanceolate to ovate, length < 5 × width; fruit entire or slightly notched

4. Leaves elliptic to ovate, length 1.5–3 × width; corolla 5–10 mm, lavender to blue; fruit rounded to obcordate ..... V. anagallis-aquatica

4' Leaves lanceolate, length 3–5 × width; corolla 3–5 mm, pink; fruit notched 0.1–0.3 mm ..... V. catenata

1' Racemes mostly terminal, or flowers 1 in axils; herbage generally hairy; annual or perennial herb

5. Perennial herb, rhizomed

6. Style 6–9 mm, > fruit; corolla 8–13 mm

7. Leaves hairy; corolla 8–10 mm, pale blue to lavender-rose; e Klamath Ranges ..... V. copelandii

7' Leaves generally glabrous; corolla 10–13 mm, deep blue; Cascade Range, n&c High Sierra Nevada ..... V. cusickii

6' Style 0.8–3 mm, generally < fruit; corolla 6–10 mm

8. Style 2–3 mm; fruit generally < calyx, wider than long; stem decumbent ..... V. serpyllifolia subsp. humifusa

8' Style 0.8–1.3 mm; fruit > calyx, longer than wide; stem erect nearly from base ..... V. wormskjoldii

5' Annual, fibrous-rooted or taprooted

9. Pedicel 0.5–2 mm, < calyx; seeds generally many per chamber, flat, smooth

10. Leaf triangular to ovate, crenate to serrate; sepals unequal (outer pair larger); corolla blue to violet ..... V. arvensis

10' Leaf oblong to spoon-shaped, entire to ± serrate; sepals ± equal; corolla ± white ..... V. peregrina subsp. xalapensis

9' Pedicel 4–30 mm, generally > calyx; seeds 5–12 per chamber, concave, outer surface rough

11. Pedicel 15–30 mm; leaf crenate to serrate; style 2–3 mm; fruit lobes spreading ..... V. persica

11' Pedicel 4–15 mm; leaf palmately 3–9 lobed; style 1.2–1.6 mm; fruit lobes ± parallel (or fruit ± round) ..... [V. triphyllos]


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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