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Warren L. Wagner & Peter C. Hoch, family description, key to genera; treatment of genera by Warren L. Wagner, except as noted

Annual to perennial herb (to tree). Leaf: cauline or basal, alternate, opposite, or whorled, generally simple and toothed (to pinnately compound); stipules 0 or generally deciduous. Inflorescence: spike, raceme, panicle, or flowers 1 in axils; bracted. Flower: generally bisexual, generally radial, often opening at either dawn or dusk; hypanthium generally prolonged beyond ovary (measured from ovary tip to sepal base); sepals 4(2–7); petals 4(2–7, rarely 0), often fading darker; stamens 2 × or = sepals in number, anthers 2-chambered, opening lengthwise, pollen interconnected by threads; ovary inferior, chambers generally as many as sepals (sometimes becoming 1), placentas axile or parietal, ovules 1–many per chamber, style 1, stigma 4-lobed (or lobes as many as sepals), club-shaped, spheric, or hemispheric. Fruit: capsule, loculicidal (sometimes berry or indehiscent and nut-like). Seed: sometimes winged or hair-tufted.
22 genera, ± 657 species: worldwide, especially western North America; many cultivated (Clarkia, Epilobium, Fuchsia, Oenothera). [Wagner et al. 2007 Syst Bot Monogr 83:1–240] Gaura moved to Oenothera. Fuchsia magellanica Lam. naturalized in northern California. —Scientific Editors: Robert Patterson, Bruce G. Baldwin.
Unabridged references: [Munz 1965 North America Fl II 5:1–278]

Key to Onagraceae

Annual to perennial herb, generally from taproot, occasionally rhizomed. Leaf: basal or cauline, alternate, generally pinnately toothed to lobed, generally sessile. Inflorescence: spike, raceme-like, or flowers in axils of distal, reduced leaves. Flower: radial or (sect. Gaura) bilateral, generally opening at dusk; sepals 4, reflexed in flower (sometimes 2–3 remaining adherent); petals 4, yellow, white, rose, or ± purple, generally fading ± orange to ± purple, tip notched or toothed; stamens 8, filaments sometimes (sect. Gaura) with paired teeth at base, anthers attached at middle; ovary chambers 4, stigma generally deeply lobed, generally > anthers and cross-pollinated (or ± = anthers and self-pollinated). Fruit: generally dehiscent, cylindric to ovoid or obovoid, cylindric to 4-winged or -angled, straight to curved, generally sessile (base sometimes seedless, stalk-like). Seed: in generally 2(1–3) rows per chamber, or clustered or reduced to 1–4 per fruit.
145 species: America, some widely naturalized. (Greek: wine-scented) [Wagner et al. 2007 Syst Bot Monogr 83:1–240]
Unabridged references: [Raven & Gregory 1972 Mem Torrey Bot Club 23:1–96; Dietrich & Wagner 1988 Syst Bot Monogr 24:1–91]
Unabridged note: Many species self-pollinated; some of these have chromosome peculiarities (ring of 14 in meiosis) and ± 50% pollen fertility; they yield genetically identical offspring.

Key to Oenothera

Perennial herb, rosetted; caudex woody, new shoots generally from lateral roots; hairs glandular and occasionally also coarse and nonglandular. Stem: sprawling, < 2 dm, or ± 0. Leaf: 1.7–36 cm, oblanceolate to narrowly elliptic, generally irregularly dentate to lobed. Inflorescence: flowers in axils. Flower: sepals 16–50 mm, tips in bud not free; petals 16–56 mm, white. Fruit: 4–9 mm wide, cylindric to elliptic-ovate, tubercled. Seed: obovate to ± triangular, papillate or netted, 1 side with a cavity sealed by a depressed, generally splitting membrane.
2n=14,28. [Oenothera caespitosa, orth. var.] Cross-pollinated. 5 intergrading subspecies, 2 in California. [Online Interchange]

O. cespitosa subsp. crinita (Rydb.) Munz CESPITOSE EVENING-PRIMROSE
Plant loosely to densely cespitose. Flower: hypanthium 30–85 mm; petals fading rose to purple. Fruit: 10–34 mm, lanceolate to elliptic-ovate, generally S-shaped; stalk-like base 0–1 mm. Seed: 2.9–3.5 mm; cavity margin lobed.
Calcium soils in bristlecone-pine forest, pinyon/juniper woodland, desert scrub; 1150–3370 m. Modoc Plateau (Likely), East of Sierra Nevada, Desert; western United States. [Oenothera cespitosa var. crinita (Rydb.) Munz; Oenothera caespitosa subsp. crinita, orth. var.] 2 intergrading forms differ in elevation, habit, leaf size, petal color; more study needed. Jun–Sep [Online Interchange] {CNPS listed}

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Citation for the whole project: Jepson Flora Project (eds.) 2013. Jepson eFlora,, accessed on Nov 25 2015
Citation for this treatment: [Author of taxon treatment] 2013. Oenothera, in Jepson Flora Project (eds.) Jepson eFlora,, accessed on Nov 25 2015

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Geographic subdivisions indicated for the distribution of Oenothera cespitosa subsp. crinita 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.