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Ihsan A. Al-Shehbaz, except as noted

Annual to shrub; sap pungent, watery. Leaf: generally simple, alternate; generally both basal, cauline; stipules 0. Inflorescence: generally raceme, generally not bracted. Flower: bisexual, generally radial; sepals 4, generally free; petals (0)4, forming a cross, generally white or yellow to purple; stamens generally 6 (2 or 4), 4 long, 2 short (3 pairs of unequal length); ovary 1, superior, generally 2-chambered with septum connecting 2 parietal placentas; style 1, stigma entire or 2-lobed. Fruit: capsule, generally 2-valved, "silique" (length >= 3 × width) or "silicle" (length < 3 × width), dehiscent by 2 valves or indehiscent, cylindric or flat parallel or perpendicular to septum, segmented or not. Seed: 1–many, in 1 or 2 rows per chamber, winged or wingless; embryo strongly curved.
± 330 genera, 3780 species: worldwide, especially temperate. [Al-Shehbaz et al. 2006 Plant Syst Evol 259:89–120] Highest diversity in Mediterranean area, mountains of southwestern Asia, adjacent central Asia, western North America; some Brassica species are oil or vegetable crops; Arabidopsis thaliana used in experimental molecular biology; many species are ornamentals, weeds. Aurinia saxatilis (L.) Desvaux in cultivation only. Aubrieta occasional waif in central North Coast Ranges, Carrichtera annua (L.) DC. in South Coast, Iberis sempervirens L., Iberis umbellata L. in Peninsular Ranges, Teesdalia coronopifolia (Bergeret) Thell., Teesdalia nudicaulis (L.) W.T. Aiton in southern Outer North Coast Ranges, Central Coast. Cardaria, Coronopus moved to Lepidium; Caulostramina to Hesperidanthus; Guillenia to Caulanthus; Heterodraba to Athysanus; California taxa of Lesquerella to Physaria; Malcolmia africana to Strigosella. —Scientific Editors: Douglas H. Goldman, Bruce G. Baldwin.

Key to Brassicaceae


Michael D. Windham & Ihsan A. Al-Shehbaz

Perennial herb (biennial); caudex simple or branched, persistent leaf bases generally absent; rosetted or not; rosette at ground surface or elevated on woody base; hairs simple or 2–14-rayed, stalked or sessile. Stem: simple or branched, leafy. Leaf: basal petioled, simple, generally entire or dentate, generally hairy; cauline sessile, base generally lobed, entire or dentate. Inflorescence: generally elongated. Flower: sepals bases generally not sac-like; petals generally white, lavender, or purple, claw present or 0; pollen ellipsoid in sexual plants, spheric in plants with asexual seeds. Fruit: silique, dehiscent, generally linear, edges generally parallel, unsegmented, flat parallel to septum; stigma entire or 2-lobed. Seed: in 1 or 2 rows, winged or not.
110+ species: temperate North America, Russian Far East. (T.W. Boecher, Danish cytogeneticist, 1909–1983) [Windham & Al-Shehbaz 2006–2007 Harvard Pap Bot 11:61–88, 11:257–274, 12:235–257] Some species with both fertile & sterile stems. Previously included in Arabis, but the 2 genera in different tribes. Boechera horizontalis (Greene) Windham & Al-Shehbaz [Arabis suffrutescens S. Watson var. horizontalis (Greene) Rollins] not in California.
Unabridged references: [Al-Shehbaz 2003 Novon 13:381–391]
Unabridged note: Hybrids with spheric pollen and morphological intermediacy generally more common than sexual diploids (with ellipsoid pollen).

Key to Boechera

B. pendulocarpa (A. Nelson) Windham & Al-Shehbaz DROPSEED ROCKCRESS
Caudex generally not woody. Stem: generally 1 per caudex branch, from center of basal rosette at ± ground surface; 0.6–3 dm, proximally with simple and stalked, 2–4-rayed hairs 0.1–0.4 mm. Leaf: basal 1.5–5 mm wide, entire; hairs short-stalked, 4–8-rayed, 0.08–0.2 mm; cauline 6–17, distal glabrous or ± hairy, basal lobes 0. Inflorescence: 4–11-flowered, not 1-sided in fruit; fruit pedicel ± horizontal near base, ± recurved, 3–12 mm, glabrous or hairs few, appressed, branched. Flower: sepals hairy; petals 4–6 mm, 1–1.5 mm wide, white or lavender; pollen ellipsoid. Fruit: pendent, not appressed, 2–3.8 cm, 1.5–2.2 mm wide, glabrous; style 0.3–0.5 mm; ovules 66–92. Seed: generally in 2 rows, 1–1.2 mm; wing 0.05–0.1 mm wide.
2n=14. Rock outcrops, gravelly slopes, in open meadows; 1800–3000 m. Great Basin Floristic Province; to western Canada, Montana, Utah. [Arabis holboellii Hornem. var. pendulocarpa (A. Nelson) Rollins] Apr–Jul [Online Interchange]
Unabridged synonyms: [Arabis pendulocarpa A. Nelson; Boechera holboellii (Hornem.) Á. Löve & D. Löve var. pendulocarpa (A. Nelson) N. Snow]

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Citation for the whole project: Jepson Flora Project (eds.) 2013. Jepson eFlora,, accessed on Mar 30 2015
Citation for this treatment: [Author of taxon treatment] 2013. Boechera, in Jepson Flora Project (eds.) Jepson eFlora,, accessed on Mar 30 2015

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Geographic subdivisions indicated for the distribution of Boechera pendulocarpa 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.