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NYCTAGINACEAE FOUR O'CLOCK FAMILY

Andy Murdock, except as noted

Annual, perennial herb, subshrub, [shrub, tree], glabrous or hairy. Stem: often forked. Leaf: opposite, sessile or petioled, pairs generally unequal; blade generally entire. Inflorescence: generally forked; spike, head-like cluster, or umbel, flowers rarely 1, bracts forming a calyx-like involucre or not. Flower: bisexual, generally ± radial (bilateral), sometimes cleistogamous in some genera; perianth of 1 whorl, generally petal-like, bell- to trumpet-shaped, base hardened, tightly surrounding ovary in fruit, lobes 3–5, generally notched to ± lobed; stamens 1–many; ovary superior (appearing inferior due to hardened perianth base), style 1. Fruit: achene in hardened perianth base; round to ± flat; smooth, angled, ribbed, or winged; glabrous, hairy, or glandular.
30 genera, 350 species: warm regions, especially America; some ornamental (Bougainvillea; Mirabilis, four o'clock). [Spellenberg 2003 FNANM 4:14–17] —Scientific Editor: Thomas J. Rosatti.

Key to Nyctaginaceae

MIRABILIS FOUR O'CLOCK
Perennial herb, subshrub. Stem: repeatedly forked, decumbent to erect. Leaf: generally petioled. Inflorescence: branches ending in umbel-like cluster or solitary flowers; bracts 5(9), ± fused (or not) into calyx-like, bell- to saucer-shaped involucre; flowers in 1 involucre 1–16, generally not blooming together; flowers cleistogamous or not. Flower: radial or ± bilateral; perianth funnel- to bell-shaped, lobes 5; stamens 3–5, generally exserted; stigma ± spheric, generally exserted. Fruit: ± round to club-shaped; ribs or angles 0, 5, 10; wings 0.
± 60 species: America, Himalayas. (Latin: wonderful) [Spellenberg 2003 FNANM 4:40–57] Flowers open in evening, close in morning; species intergrade, taxonomy unsettled.

Key to Mirabilis

M. laevis (Benth.) Curran
NATIVE
Stem: ascending to erect, < 8 dm, broadly forked, clambering or forming clumps, basally woody, [glabrous] scabrous, or glandular-hairy. Leaf: fleshy, hairs 0 or various, often glandular. Inflorescence: involucres in terminal, umbel-like cluster or generally 1 in axils, 3–7 mm, 1(2)-flowered, bracts 5, lobes < tube, ± ovate. Flower: perianth white to magenta, 5–14 mm. Fruit: ovoid, generally dark colored, often spotted, with 10 obscure vertical lines. Mirabilis laevis var. laevis restricted to Mexico. [Online Interchange]
Unabridged synonyms: [Oxybaphus laevis Benth.]

M. laevis var. retrorsa (A. Heller) Jeps.
NATIVE
Stem: (and leaf) with short, reflexed hairs, generally also ± glandular-hairy; stems with inflorescences generally branched throughout. Leaf: blade 0.5–3.5 cm. Inflorescence: involucre bell-shaped, 5–6 mm. Flower: perianth 8–12 mm, widely funnel-shaped, white (pale pink). Fruit: ± spheric, generally with 5–10 visible lines.
Rocky places; < 2300 m. White and Inyo Mountains, Desert; Oregon; to Utah, Arizona, northwestern Mexico. [Mirabilis bigelovii var. retrorsa (A. Heller) Munz] Feb–Jun [Online Interchange]

Previous taxon: Mirabilis laevis var. crassifolia
Next taxon: Mirabilis laevis var. villosa

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Citation for the whole project: Jepson Flora Project (eds.) 2013. Jepson eFlora, http://ucjeps.berkeley.edu/IJM.html, accessed on Aug 20 2014
Citation for this treatment: [Author of taxon treatment] 2013. Mirabilis, in Jepson Flora Project (eds.) Jepson eFlora, http://ucjeps.berkeley.edu/cgi-bin/get_IJM.pl?tid=80352, accessed on Aug 20 2014

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Geographic subdivisions indicated for the distribution of Mirabilis laevis var. retrorsa 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.
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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.