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Dale W. McNeal

Perennial herb [to shrub] or vine; rhizome short, generally with fleshy tubers. Stem: branchlets leaf-like, many, thread-like or flat, functioning as leaves. Leaf: scale-like, papery, with a spiny spur at base or not. Inflorescence: raceme, umbel, or flowers 1. Flower: bisexual or not, ± white to green-yellow; perianth segments 6, in 2 petal-like whorls, free or ± fused; stamens 6, epipetalous, anther attached near middle; ovary superior, chambers 3. Fruit: berry, spheric, often red or blue. Seed: 1–6, black.
3+ genera depending on interpretation, 320 species: especially northern temperate. —Scientific Editor: Thomas J. Rosatti.

Perennial herb. Inflorescence: pedicels slender, jointed near middle. Flower: stamens ± >= perianth, exserted; style 1, short, slender, stigmas 3.
± 300 species: especially northern temperate. (Greek: ancient name) Asparagus densiflorus (Kunth) Jessop misappl. to A. aethiopicus L., a waif.

Key to Asparagus

A. setaceus (Kunth) Jessop
Climbing or sprawling, woody; roots fibrous. Stem: <= 4 m, wiry; branchlets < 1 mm wide. Leaf: spurred, 4–10 mm. Inflorescence: generally terminal umbels; flowers 1–4. Flower: bisexual, nodding. Fruit: 4–5 mm, purple-black.
n=10. Disturbed places (sites of former gardens); < 100 m. South Coast (urban canyons, San Diego); Florida; native to southern Africa. Apr–Sep [Online Interchange]
Unabridged note: Asparagus setaceus used also for naturalized plants in Australia until it was determined that it had been misapplied there for naturalized plants belonging instead to Asparagus plumosus Baker, which might be the correct name for California plants as well.

Previous taxon: Asparagus officinalis subsp. officinalis
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Citation for the whole project: Jepson Flora Project (eds.) 2013. Jepson eFlora,, accessed on Dec 1 2015
Citation for this treatment: [Author of taxon treatment] 2013. Asparagus, in Jepson Flora Project (eds.) Jepson eFlora,, accessed on Dec 1 2015

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Geographic subdivisions indicated for the distribution of Asparagus setaceus Markers link to CCH specimen records. If the markers are obscured, reload the page [or change window size and reload]. Yellow markers indicate records that may provide evidence for eFlora range revision or may have georeferencing or identification issues.
map of distribution 1
(Note: any qualifiers in the taxon distribution description, such as 'northern', 'southern', 'adjacent' etc., are not reflected in the map above, and in some cases indication of a taxon in a subdivision is based on a single collection or author-verified occurence).

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Data provided by the participants of the Consortium of California Herbaria.
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CCH collections by month

Duplicates counted once; synonyms included.
Species do not include records of infraspecific taxa.
Blue line denotes eFlora flowering time.