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

BRASSICACEAE

MUSTARD FAMILY

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.

DRABA

Robert A. Price

Annual to perennial herb, often cushion- or mat-forming; hairs often branched
Leaves basal and sometimes cauline, entire or shallowly toothed
Flower: sepal bases equal; petals < 10 mm, yellow or white, claw and limb generally distinct
Fruit < 30 mm, generally lanceolate to ovate, generally flat parallel to septum, less often partially inflated, sometimes twisted or wavy
Seeds: 2 rows per chamber; wing generally 0
Species in genus: 350+ species: n hemisphere, mtns of South America
Etymology: (Greek: acrid)
Reference: [Rollins & Price 1988 Aliso 12:17–27]

Native

D. cuneifolia Torr. & A. Gray

Annual
Stems 1–few from base, < 40 cm; hairs short, simple and branched, often stellate, rarely 0
Leaves generally dentate; basal 5–70 mm, oblanceolate to obovate, surface hairs stellate; cauline 1–4
Inflorescence < 75-flowered; axes generally hairy; lowest pedicel < 2 X fruit
Flower: petals < 5 mm, often smaller or 0 in lateral inflorescences, divided < 1/8 to base, white
Fruits often loosely clustered, 3–12 mm, lanceolate to oblong; hairs 0 or simple, forked, and cross-shaped; style < 0.2 mm
Seeds < 100, 0.5–0.7 mm; wings 0
Chromosomes: 2n=16,32
Ecology: Open or disturbed places
Elevation: < 2000 m.
Bioregional distribution: s Sierra Nevada, San Joaquin Valley, Southwestern California, White and Inyo Mountains, Desert
Distribution outside California: w US, n Mexico
Flowering time: May
Varieties cuneifolia, integrifolia S. Watson, sonorae (Greene) Parish recognized by Hartman et al. [1976 Brittonia 27:317–327] but ± intergrade in CA.

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