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RHAMNACEAE BUCKTHORN FAMILY

John O. Sawyer, Jr., except as noted

[Perennial herb] shrub, tree, generally erect, often thorny. Leaf: simple, generally alternate, often clustered on short-shoots; stipules generally present, occasionally modified into spines; generally petioled; blade pinnate-veined or 1–5-ribbed from base. Inflorescence: cyme, panicle, umbel, or flowers 1 or clustered in axils or on short-shoots. Flower: generally bisexual, radial; hypanthium subtending, surrounding, or partly fused to ovary; sepals 4–5; petals 0, 4–5, generally clawed; stamens 0, 4–5, alternate sepals, attached to hypanthium top, each generally fitting into a petal concavity; disk (0 or) between stamens, ovary, thin to fleshy, entire or lobed, free from ovary, adherent or fused to hypanthium; ovary superior or ± inferior, chambers [1]2–4, 1–2-ovuled, style 1, stigma entire or 2–3-lobed. Fruit: capsule, drupe.
50–52 genera, 950 species: especially tropics, subtropics some cultivated (Ceanothus; Frangula; Rhamnus; Ziziphus). [Richardson et al. 2000 Amer J Bot 87:1309–1324] —Scientific Editors: Steve Boyd, Thomas J. Rosatti.
Unabridged references: [Brizicky 1965 J Arnold Arbor 45:439–463; Richardson et al. 2000 Kew Bull 55:311–341]

Key to Rhamnaceae

FRANGULA COFFEE BERRY
Shrub, small tree. Stem: branches alternate, flexible; winter bud scales 0. Leaf: scattered along branches or clustered on short-shoots, deciduous or not; stipules generally deciduous; petioled; blade veins prominent or not. Inflorescence: umbel or flowers 1 in axils. Flower: bisexual; hypanthium 1–3 mm wide, cup-shaped; sepals 5, erect, fleshy, keeled adaxially; petals 5, short-clawed; stamens 5; disk thin, adherent to hypanthium; ovary ± inferior, chambers 2–3, 1–2-ovuled, stigma 2–3-lobed. Fruit: drupe, 2–3[4]-stoned.
50 species: temperate, w. Med, Eurasia. (Frangible: capable of being broken) [Sawyer & Edwards 2007 Madroño 54:172–174] Often a subg. of Rhamnus; some of value in food, medicine.
Unabridged references: [Bolmgren & Oxelman 2004 Taxon 53:383–390; Wolf 1938 Rancho Santa Ana Bot Gard Monogr 1.]

Key to Frangula

F. purshiana (DC.) J.G. Cooper CASCARA
NATIVE
Stem: bark gray; twigs green, gray, red, or dull brown, generally glabrous or densely hairy; terminal bud brown-hairy. Leaf: generally deciduous; petiole 5–25 mm; blade (50)80–150 mm, widely elliptic to obovate, generally thin, generally green, generally not papillate, glabrous to sparsely hairy, or blue- or green-gray, ± glaucous when fresh, papillate, densely hairy or velvety adaxially, light green, sparsely to densely hairy abaxially, base rounded, cordate, or tapered, tip obtuse to truncate or notched, margin entire to toothed, generally not wavy, veins prominent, 1°, 2°, 3° veins generally glabrous or sparsely hairy. Inflorescence: < 25-flowered; pedicel < 25 mm. Flower: hypanthium 3 mm wide. Fruit: 3-stoned, 5–10 mm, black. Bark and fruit TOXIC in excess, especially to children. [Rhamnus purshiana DC.] Cathartic drugs from bark. [Online Interchange]

F. purshiana subsp. purshiana
NATIVE
Tree, shrub, < 12 m. Stem: bark gray; twigs red to brown. Leaf: petiole 5–25 mm; blade thin, green, glabrous to sparsely hairy, base rounded or cordate, tip obtuse to truncate, margin irregularly toothed to entire.
Coastal scrub, conifer forest, forest edges, non-serpentine; < 2000 m. Northwestern California (except Inner North Coast Ranges); to British Columbia, Montana. Feb–Jun [Online Interchange]

Previous taxon: Frangula purshiana subsp. annonifolia
Next taxon: Frangula purshiana subsp. ultramafica

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Citation for the whole project: Jepson Flora Project (eds.) 2013. Jepson eFlora, http://ucjeps.berkeley.edu/IJM.html, accessed on Dec 21 2014
Citation for this treatment: [Author of taxon treatment] 2013. Frangula, in Jepson Flora Project (eds.) Jepson eFlora, http://ucjeps.berkeley.edu/cgi-bin/get_IJM.pl?tid=85263, accessed on Dec 21 2014

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Geographic subdivisions indicated for the distribution of Frangula purshiana subsp. purshiana 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.