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James S. Pringle, except as noted

Annual to perennial herb [to trees]. Stem: decumbent to erect, < 2 m, simple or branched. Leaf: simple, cauline, sometimes also basal, opposite or whorled, entire, sessile or basal ± petioled; stipules 0. Flower: bisexual, radial, parts in 4s or 5s except pistil 1; sepals fused, persistent; petals fused, ± persistent, sinus between lobes often unappendaged; stamens epipetalous, alternate corolla lobes; ovary superior, chamber 1, placentas parietal, often intruding, stigmas 1–2. Fruit: capsule, 2-valved. Seed: many.
± 90 genera, 1800 species: worldwide; some cultivated (Eustoma, Exacum, Gentiana). [Struwe & Albert 2002 Gentianaceae. Cambridge Univ Press] Gentianella tenella moved to Comastoma. Key to genera revised by Bruce G. Baldwin. —Scientific Editor: Thomas J. Rosatti.
Unabridged references: [Wood & Weaver 1982 J Arnold Arbor 63:441–487; Struwe & Albert 2002 Gentianaceae: Systematics and Natural History. Cambridge Univ Press]

Key to Gentianaceae


Bruce G. Baldwin

Perennial herb; non-flowering rosettes appearing with flower-stems. Leaf: basal ± petioled; cauline generally (sub)opposite or some alternate, < basal, bases not fused-sheathing. Inflorescence: cyme or panicle of dense clusters. Flower: parts generally in 5s, sometimes in 4s; calyx fused near base, lobes lanceolate; corolla rotate (bell-shaped), lobes >> tube, ridge between stamens fringed or scaled or neither, nectary pits prominent, 2 per lobe, margins of openings ± fringed; ovary sessile, style short, poorly differentiated, persistent, entire, stigmas 2.
± 135 species: temperate North America, Eurasia, Africa. (E. Sweert, Dutch herbalist, 1552–1612) [von Hagen & Kadereit 2002 Syst Bot 27:548–572] Other taxa in TJM (1993) moved to Frasera.
Unabridged etymology: (E. Sweert, Swert, or Sweerts, Dutch botanist, florist, herbalist, artist, 1552–1612)
Unabridged references: [St. John 1941 Amer Midl Naturalist 21:1–29]

S. perennis L. STAR SWERTIA
Plant 1–5 dm, glabrous. Stem: generally 1; rosettes 1–few. Leaf: basal 3–16 cm, 12–30 mm wide, spoon-shaped to obovate, tips obtuse; cauline elliptic-oblanceolate, tips subacute. Inflorescence: open; pedicels 2–30(60) mm. Flower: calyx 4–8 mm; corolla 7–13 mm, blue-white to -violet, veins darker, lobes lance-oblong, acute, ridge between stamens low, nectary pits round.
2n=28. Wet meadows, bogs; 2300–3200 m. Klamath Ranges, n&s High Sierra Nevada; Oregon (Wallowa Mountains), also Alaska to Colorado; Eurasia. Jul–Sep [Online Interchange]

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

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Geographic subdivisions indicated for the distribution of Swertia perennis 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.