Jepson Flora Project: Jepson Interchange    

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Jepson Interchange (more information)
©Copyright 1993 by the Regents of the University of California

  • Up-to-date information about California vascular plants is available from the Jepson eFlora.



Reed C. Rollins, except as specified

Annual to subshrub
Leaves generally basal and cauline, alternate, generally simple; stipules 0
Inflorescence: generally raceme
Flower bisexual; sepals 4, free; petals (0)4, free, generally white or yellow, often clawed; stamens generally (2,4)6, generally 4 long, 2 short; ovary 1, superior, chambers generally 2, septum membranous, connecting 2 parietal placentas, style 1, stigma simple or 2-lobed
Fruit: generally capsule ("silique") with 2 deciduous valves, sometimes breaking transversely or indehiscent
Seeds 1–many per chamber
Genera in family: 300+ genera, 3000+ species: worldwide, especially cool regions; some cultivated for food (especially Brassica, Raphanus ) and ornamental
Recent taxonomic note: Recently treated to include Capparaceae [Rodman et al. 1993 Ann Missouri Bot Gard 80:686–699; Rollins 1993 Cruciferae of Continental North America. Stanford Univ Press]
Family description, key to genera by Robert A. Price.



Biennial, perennial herb; base woody or not; hairs 0 to dense, simple, forked, stellate, or multibranched; caudex branched or not
Stem branched or not, cylindric, leafy
Leaves: basal petioled, entire or dentate; cauline generally sessile, entire or dentate, base often lobed, often clasping stem
Inflorescence: bracts 0
Flower erect to reflexed; sepals erect; petals spoon-shaped to oblong and narrowed at base or narrowly obovate, white to deep purple, rarely straw-colored
Fruit erect to reflexed, linear, straight to curved, flat parallel to septum, rarely ± cylindric
Seeds ± many, generally 1 row per chamber, flat or plump, winged or not; embryonic root at edges of both cotyledons
Species in genus: ± 120 species: temp North America, Eurasia, Africa
Etymology: (Latin: of Arabia)


A. lyallii S. Watson

Perennial; caudex branched; hairs multibranched, ± minute
Stems few–many, < 15 cm, glabrous
Leaves: basal narrowly petioled, 1–3 cm, entire; cauline few, well spaced, sessile, 1–2 cm, lanceolate to oblong, base generally tapered, tip acute
Flower: petals spoon-shaped, rose to purplish
Fruit erect to ± spreading, 3–5 cm, straight, glabrous; tip tapered; style short or 0
Seed round, winged
Ecology: Rock crevices, slopes, ridges
Elevation: 2400–3800 m.
Bioregional distribution: High Cascade Range, High Sierra Nevada, Warner Mountains, White and Inyo Mountains
Distribution outside California: to British Columbia, Wyoming
2 vars. total.


var. nubigena (J.F. Macbr. & Payson) Rollins

Stem ± prostrate to ascending, slender
Leaves: basal 1–2.4 mm wide, linear to linear-oblanceolate, tip acute to acuminate
Ecology: Rock slides, open ridges
Elevation: 2900–3800 m.
Bioregional distribution: High Sierra Nevada, White and Inyo Mountains
Distribution outside California: to Idaho, Wyoming
Flowering time: Jul–Aug

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