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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.



Dale W. McNeal, except as noted

Perennial herb, from rhizome or bulb, or rhizomes ending in weakly developed bulbs, scapose or not. Leaf: alternate, whorled, or mostly basal and spirally arranged, deciduous after 1 year or not. Inflorescence: raceme, panicle, or flowers 1. Flower: perianth parts 6, in 2 petal-like whorls or of sepals and petals, free or fused below, ± spreading; stamens 6, from perianth, anthers attached at base or near middle; ovary superior or partly inferior, chambers 3, styles 3, persistent. Fruit: capsule, loculicidal or septicidal.
10 genera, 130 species: northern hemisphere. W North America Zigadenus moved to Toxicoscordion. —Scientific Editors: Dale W. McNeal, Thomas J. Rosatti.

Key to Melanthiaceae

1. Leaves linear

2. Leaves persistent after 1 year, wiry, tough; cauline leaves many, reduced upward ..... XEROPHYLLUM

2' Leaves deciduous after 1 year, not wiry, not tough; cauline leaves 0 or 1–2, much reduced

3. Perianth parts pale green-yellow to ± purple, without glands; ovary partly inferior (at base) ..... STENANTHIUM

3' Perianth parts white to ± yellow, with 1–2 distinct glands near base; ovary superior ..... TOXICOSCORDION

1' Leaves lanceolate to widely ovate

4. Leaves > 3, alternate; plant 1–2 m ..... VERATRUM

4' Leaves 3, in 1 whorl subtending flower; plant < 0.7 m

5. Leaves petioled (subsessile), leathery; petals white (pink), generally purple-spotted ..... PSEUDOTRILLIUM

5' Leaves sessile or subsessile, not leathery; petals white, ± pink, ± yellow, or purple, not spotted ..... TRILLIUM


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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