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Robert E. Preston & James R. Shevock

Shrub, small tree. Stem: generally glabrous; branchlets or twigs generally thorny. Leaf: generally deciduous, simple, generally small, generally alternate, entire; stipules minute or 0. Inflorescence: flowers 1. Flower: generally bisexual, radial; hypanthium short; sepals, petals generally 5(3–6), free; petals generally white, ephemeral; stamens 4–50, on or around disk; pistils 1–9, simple, styles short, stigmas head-like, ovules generally 2–many. Fruit: follicles, 1–9. Seed: brown to black, arilled.
4 genera, 9 species: western United States, Mexico. [Sosa & Chase 2003 Syst Bot 28:96–105] —Scientific Editor: Thomas J. Rosatti.
Unabridged references: [Thorne & Scogin 1978 Aliso 9:171–178; Sosa & Chase 2003 Syst Bot 28:96–105]

Key to Crossosomataceae

Leaf: deciduous (or dry when dormant); petiole 0–short. Inflorescence: peduncle bracted or not. Flower: petals 9–15 mm, ± round or oblong, generally white. Fruit: cylindric, surface smooth or net-like, beak 1–2 mm. Seed: generally > 2 per fruit, black, shiny, round to flat; aril conspicuous, fringed, ± yellow.
2 species: southern California to Arizona, Mexico. (Greek: fringe body, from aril)

Key to Crossosoma

C. californicum Nutt. CATALINA CROSSOSOMA
Plant 1–5 m. Stem: branchlets ± thorny. Leaf: oblong (to obovate or spoon-shaped). Flower: sepals round-ovate; petals 12–15 mm, ± round, white, ± clawed. Fruit: 2–9, 15–20 mm, ± recurved at tip. Seed: generally > 20, ± 2.5 mm diam.
Dry, rocky slopes, canyons; < 610 m. c South Coast (Palos Verdes Peninsula), s Channel Islands (San Clemente, Santa Catalina islands); Baja California (Guadalupe Island). Feb–May [Online Interchange] {CNPS list}

Previous taxon: Crossosoma bigelovii
Next taxon: Glossopetalon


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Citation for the whole project: Jepson Flora Project (eds.) 2013. Jepson eFlora,, accessed on Nov 27 2015
Citation for this treatment: [Author of taxon treatment] 2013. Crossosoma, in Jepson Flora Project (eds.) Jepson eFlora,, accessed on Nov 27 2015

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click for enlargement Crossosoma californicum
See CalPhotos for additional images
2005 Palos Verdes Peninsula Land Conservancy

Geographic subdivisions indicated for the distribution of Crossosoma californicum 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).

View elevation by latitude chart
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.