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Previous taxon Indexes to all accepted names and synonyms:
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Gary D. Wallace, except as noted

Perennial herb, shrub, tree. Stem: bark often peeling distinctively. Leaf: simple or 0, generally cauline, alternate, opposite (whorled), evergreen or deciduous, often leathery, petioled or not; stipules 0. Inflorescence: raceme, panicle, cyme, or flowers 1, terminal or axillary, generally bracted; pedicel often with 2 bractlets. Flower: generally bisexual, generally radial, bell-shaped, cylindric, or urn-shaped; sepals generally (0)4–5, generally free; petals generally (0)4–5, free or fused; stamens (2–5)8–10, free, filaments rarely appendaged, anthers dehiscing by pores or slits, awns 0 or 2(4), seemingly abaxial, reduced or elongate, generally curved; nectary generally present at ovary base, generally disk-like; ovary superior or inferior, chambers generally 1–5, placentas axile or parietal, ovules 1–many per chamber, style 1, stigma head- to funnel-like or lobed. Fruit: capsule, drupe, berry. Seed: generally many, winged or not.
± 100 genera, 3000 species: generally worldwide except deserts; some cultivated, especially Arbutus, Arctostaphylos, Rhododendron, Vaccinium. [Kron et al. 2002 Bot Rev 68:335–423] Monophyletic only if Empetraceae included, as treated here. Ledum included in Rhododendron. Non-green plants obtain nutrition from green plants through fungal intermediates. —Scientific Editors: Gary D. Wallace, Thomas J. Rosatti.

Key to Ericaceae


Kathleen A. Kron

Subshrub to low shrub, evergreen; generally dioecious. Stem: spreading to decumbent, densely branching. Leaf: alternate or whorled, linear to ± oblong, stiff, strongly rolled under, apparent groove abaxially. Inflorescence: axillary or terminal, flowers 1 or in few-flowered clusters, ± sessile. Flower: unisexual [bisexual], reduced, perianth parts 3–6, ± free, dark purple-red, subtended by scaly bracts. Fruit: drupe, generally juicy. Seed: stones 2–9.
2–4 species: circumboreal, southern Chile, Tierra del Fuego. (Greek: on rocks, from habitat) [Kron 1996 Ann Bot 77:293–304] Wind-pollinated.

Stem: generally decumbent, branches 15–40 cm. Leaf: crowded, 3–6 mm, glabrous except along groove. Staminate flower: stamens (2)3(4). Pistillate flower: ovary superior, chambers 2–9, style deeply 2–9-lobed. Fruit: 4–6 mm wide, black or purple-black, occasionally red.
Coastal cliffs on rocks; < 200 m. n North Coast (Del Norte, Humboldt cos.); to Alaska; circumboreal. If recognized taxonomically, plants with bisexual flowers assignable to Empetrum nigrum var. hermaphroditum (Hagerup) T.J. Sørensen. Apr–May [Online Interchange] {CNPS list}
Unabridged note: California populations scattered, small. If recognized taxonomically, plants with bisexual flowers assignable to Empetrum nigrum var. hermaphroditum (Hagerup) T.J. Sørensen. Most California plants seem dioecious.

Previous taxon: Empetrum
Next taxon: Erica


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Citation for the whole project: Jepson Flora Project (eds.) 2013. Jepson eFlora,, accessed on Nov 26 2015
Citation for this treatment: [Author of taxon treatment] 2013. Empetrum, in Jepson Flora Project (eds.) Jepson eFlora,, accessed on Nov 26 2015

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click for enlargement Empetrum nigrum
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2008 Louis-M. Landry

Geographic subdivisions indicated for the distribution of Empetrum nigrum 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.