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.


Annual; hairs 0 or sparse, minute, branched
Inflorescence open; bracts 0
Flower: petals white
Fruit ± elliptic, ± flat perpendicular to septum; wing 0; notch 0
Seeds several per chamber; wing 0; embryonic root at back of 1 cotyledon
Species in genus: 3 species: Eur, 1 apparently native in North America as well
Etymology: (E. Hutchins, Irish botanist, 1785–1815)


H. procumbens (L.) Desv.

Stem ± decumbent to ± erect, (3)5–10(15) cm, many-branched
Leaves: basal and lower cauline petioled, 5–20 mm, obovate, entire to lobed; upper leaves fewer, sessile, reduced
Flower: sepals ± 1 mm; petals ± 1 mm, obovate or narrower
Fruit 2.5–3.5 mm, elliptic to ± obovate; valve veins prominent, netted; style < 0.2 mm
Chromosomes: 2n=12
Ecology: Alkali flats, saline seeps, shaded sites, sagebrush, juniper woodland
Elevation: < 2600 m.
Bioregional distribution: California (except Klamath Ranges, High Sierra Nevada)
Distribution outside California: to British Columbia, Labrador, Baja California, also Europe
Flowering time: Mar–Jul

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