Jepson Flora Project: Jepson Interchange    

 
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BORAGINACEAE

BORAGE FAMILY

Annual, perennial herb, shrubs, generally bristly or sharply hairy
Stem prostrate to erect
Leaves cauline, often with basal rosette, generally simple, alternate; lower sometimes opposite, entire
Inflorescence: cyme, generally elongate, panicle-, raceme- or spike-like, coiled in flower, generally uncoiled in fruit or flowers 1–2 per axil
Flowers generally bisexual, generally radial; sepals 5, free or fused in lower half; corolla 5-lobed, generally salverform, top of tube generally appendaged, appendages 5, alternating with stamens, sometimes arching over tube; stamens 5, epipetalous; ovary superior, generally 4-lobed, style generally entire
Fruit: nutlets 1–4, smooth to variously roughened, sometimes prickly or bristled
Genera in family: ± 100 genera, ± 2000 species: tropical, temp, especially w North America, Medit; some cultivated (Borago, Echium, Myosotis, Symphytum ). Almost all genera may be TOXIC from alkaloids or accumulated nitrates
Recent taxonomic note: Recently treated to include Hydrophyllaceae [Olmsted et al. 2000 Mol Phylog Evol 16:96–112]
Family description, key to genera by Timothy C. Messick.

PLAGIOBOTHRYS

POPCORNFLOWER

Timothy C. Messick

Annual, perennial herb, generally strigose
Stem prostrate to erect, branched at base or above, < 5 dm
Leaves simple, 0.5–10 cm, generally smaller upward; all cauline (lower opposite, linear to oblong, upper generally alternate) or both basal (often in rosettes) and cauline (alternate, linear to oblanceolate)
Inflorescence: raceme or spike, coiled in bud, generally elongate in fruit; bracts 0–many; pedicels generally 0–1 mm
Flower bisexual; sepals fused below middle, 2–10 mm in fruit; corolla 1–12 mm wide, all white or yellow inside tube
Fruit: nutlets generally 4, 1–3.5 mm; back generally with midrib, lateral ribs, cross-ribs, interspaces, generally tubercled, sometimes prickled or bristled; scar generally lateral (on side) near middle or base, sometimes basal (on bottom) or oblique (between side and bottom), sometimes on a stalk or short peg, generally ovate to triangular
Species in genus: ± 65 species: temp w North America, w South America
Etymology: (Greek: sideways pit, from position of nutlet attachment scar)
Reference: [Higgins 1974 Great Basin Natur 34(2):161–166; Johnson 1932 Contr Arnold Abroretum 3:1–102]
Fully mature nutlets critical for identification; intergradation common in some species groups; sect. Allocarya often treated as a separate genus; many species need further study.

Native

P. stipitatus (Greene) I.M. Johnst.

Annual, short-strigose
Stem ascending to erect, 1–5 dm, often fleshy, hollow
Leaves cauline; lower 2–11 cm
Inflorescence bracted below middle; pedicels generally solid
Flower: calyx 5–8 mm, sepal midribs ± fleshy; corolla 2–12 mm wide
Fruit: nutlet 1.5–2.5 mm, lanceolate to lance-ovate; midrib, lateral ribs low, rounded, below middle obscure; cross-ribs above middle, rounded, oblique or arched, sometimes bristled; scar basal or rarely ± oblique, generally on short peg
Ecology: Vernal pools, wet sites
Elevation: < 1500 m.
Bioregional distribution: California Floristic Province, Great Basin Floristic Province
Distribution outside California: Oregon
Varieties intergrade in SnJV.

Native

var. stipitatus


Flower: corolla 5–12 mm wide
Ecology: Vernal pools, wet sites in grasslands
Elevation: < 450 m.
Bioregional distribution: California Floristic Province (especially Great Central Valley, Northwestern California)
Distribution outside California: Oregon

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