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Key to families | Table of families and genera

Previous taxon Indexes to all accepted names and synonyms:
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Margriet Wetherwax & Dieter H. Wilken, family description, key to genera

Annual, perennial herb, woody vine [shrub], occasionally aquatic. Leaf: generally basal and cauline, alternate or opposite, simple or compound; petioles at base generally flat, occasionally sheathing or stipule-like. Inflorescence: cyme, raceme, panicle, or flowers 1. Flower: generally bisexual, generally radial; sepals 3–6(20), free, early-deciduous or withering in fruit, generally green; petals 0–many, generally free; stamens generally 5–many, staminodes generally 0; pistils 1–many, ovary superior, chamber 1, style 0–1, generally ± persistent as beak, ovules 1–many. Fruit: achene, follicle, berry, ± utricle in Trautvetteria, in aggregate or not, 1–many-seeded.
± 60 genera, 1700 species: worldwide, especially northern temperate, tropical mountains; many ornamental (Adonis, Aquilegia, Clematis, Consolida, Delphinium, Helleborus, Nigella). some highly TOXIC (Aconitum, Actaea, Delphinium, Ranunculus). [Whittemore & Parfitt 1997 FNANM 3:85–271] Taxa of Isopyrum in TJM (1993) moved to Enemion; Kumlienia moved to Ranunculus. —Scientific Editors: Douglas H. Goldman, Bruce G. Baldwin.

Key to Ranunculaceae


Alan T. Whittemore

Annual, short-lived, generally tufted. Leaf: basal, simple, linear. Inflorescence: scapose, 1-flowered. Flower: sepals (3)5(8), 1.5–4 mm, alike, free, green or scarious-margined, spurred; petals 0–5, free, linear to narrowly spoon-shaped, long-clawed, white; stamens 5–25; pistils 10–400, 1–2.5 mm, ovules 1, styles thread-like. Fruit: achene, angled, wall not veined, styles persistent, ± enlarged in fruit; receptacle elongate, generally growing and producing ovules after flower.
± 15 species: temperate worldwide. (Greek: mouse tail) [Whittemore 1997 FNANM 3:135–138]
Unabridged etymology: (Greek: mus, mouse, and oura, tail)

Key to Myosurus

M. minimus L.
Plant 4–16.5 cm. Inflorescence: scape 1.8–12.8 cm. Flower: sepals ± to clearly 3–5 nerved, scarious margin narrow or 0. Fruit: outer face 0.8–1.4 mm, 0.2–0.6 mm wide, narrowly rhombic to elliptic or oblong, not bordered; beak 0.05–0.4 mm, parallel to fruit surface; aggregate 16–50 mm, 1–3 mm wide, exserted from leaves.
Wet fields, vernal pools, streambanks, lake shores; < 2100 m. California Floristic Province, Great Basin Floristic Province; to British Columbia, eastern United States, Baja California; Europe, Asia, northern Africa. [Myosurus lepturus (A. Gray) Howell; Myosurus lepturus var. filiformis (Greene) Abrams; Myosurus minimus var. filiformis Greene; Myosurus minimus subsp. major (Greene) G.R. Campb.; Myosurus minimus var. major (Greene) K.C. Davis; Ranunculus minimus (L.) E.H.L. Krause] Apr–Jun [Online Interchange]

Previous taxon: Myosurus cupulatus
Next taxon: Myosurus sessilis


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Citation for the whole project: Jepson Flora Project (eds.) 2013. Jepson eFlora,, accessed on Nov 24 2015
Citation for this treatment: [Author of taxon treatment] 2013. Myosurus, in Jepson Flora Project (eds.) Jepson eFlora,, accessed on Nov 24 2015

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click for enlargement Myosurus minimus
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2004 Carol W. Witham

Geographic subdivisions indicated for the distribution of Myosurus minimus 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.