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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, except as noted

Annual, perennial herb, shrub; often glandular; root-parasites, roots modified into absorptive structures. Stem: generally round in ×-section. Leaf: generally simple, generally alternate, reduced to ± fleshy scales in non-green plants lacking chlorophyll; stipules generally 0. Inflorescence: spike to panicle, generally bracted, or flowers 1–2 in axils. Flower: bisexual; calyx lobes 0–5; corolla generally strongly bilateral, generally 2-lipped (upper lip generally 2-lobed, lower lip generally 3-lobed), abaxial lobes outside other lobes in bud; stamens epipetalous, 4 in 2 pairs (sometimes 1 pair sterile), additional staminode 0(1), anther sacs unequal; ovary superior, chambers 1–2, placentas 2–4, parietal, style 1, stigma lobes 0 or 2. Fruit: capsule, generally ± ovoid, loculicidal, valves 2–4. Seed: many, small, angled; surface smooth or netted.
99 genera, 2060 species: worldwide, especially northern temperate and Africa. [Bennett & Matthews 2006 Amer J Bot 93:1039–1051] High yield losses in many crops caused by Orobanche species in Africa, Mediterranean, Middle East, and eastern Europe. —Scientific Editors: Robert Patterson, Bruce G. Baldwin.

Key to Orobanchaceae

1. Plant ± purple, brown, tan, or yellow-white, not green (holoparasites); leaves reduced to ± fleshy bracts; corolla upper lip entire or 2-lobed

2. Inflorescence glabrous; bracts widely and closely overlapping, inrolled at tip; tip of upper corolla lip incurved at maturity; capsule 3–4 valved ..... KOPSIOPSIS

2' Inflorescence hairy; bracts little or not overlapping, erect or recurved at tip; upper corolla lip straight to recurved at maturity; capsule 2-valved ..... OROBANCHE

1' Plant generally green at least in part (hemiparasites); leaves normally expanded; upper corolla lip fused into a beak or hood

3. Leaves opposite, at least distally on stem

4. Upper corolla lip pink, lower lip white; calyx lobes unequal; fruit generally wider than long ..... BELLARDIA

4' Corolla yellow or red-purple; calyx lobes ± equal; fruit longer than wide ..... PARENTUCELLIA

3' Leaves alternate or ± basal

5. Tip of upper 2 corolla lobes not rounded, open, opening directed forward, forming a beak

6. Annual to subshrub; anther sacs 2 per stamen; corolla throat not indented (except Castilleja campestris); seed coat generally loose-fitting ..... CASTILLEJA

6' Annual; anther sac 1 per stamen; corolla throat generally abruptly indented forming a fold proximal to lower lip; seed coat generally tight-fitting ..... TRIPHYSARIA

5' Tip of upper 2 corolla lobes rounded, closed, opening directed downward forming a hood enclosing anthers and style

7. Anther sacs 2 per stamen, equal; leaves toothed or generally > 7-lobed ..... PEDICULARIS

7' Anther sac 1 per stamen or 2, unequal; leaves entire or lobes 3–7(11)

8. Calyx unequally 4-lobed; bracts distinct from leaves or not; lower corolla lip generally 3-toothed; inflorescence a spike ..... ORTHOCARPUS

8' Calyx sheath-like, occasionally ± notched; bracts grading from leaf-like to calyx-like; lower corolla lip 3-lobed; inflorescence various

9. Leaves entire and linear, or palmately 3–7-lobed, segments narrow; inflorescence a short dense spike, < 2(5) cm, or flowers 1, scattered; fertile stamens (2)4; middle lobe of lower corolla lip tightly rolled under, tip distinctly folded inside-out ..... CORDYLANTHUS

9' Leaves entire and oblong to lanceolate, or pinnately lobed; inflorescence an elongated spike, generally > 3 cm; fertile stamens 2 (except Chloropyron maritimum), sterile stamens reduced to rudimentary filaments or bearing sterile, long-hairy, appendages; middle lobe of lower corolla lip erect, not rolled under

10. Leaves entire; calyx = or slightly < corolla, notched ± 1 mm at tip; anther sacs ± overlapping; saline and alkaline habitats ..... CHLOROPYRON

10' Leaves pinnately lobed; calyx ± 1/2 corolla, divided > 1/2; anther sacs widely separated; not in saline or alkaline habitats ..... DICRANOSTEGIA


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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