Jepson Flora Project: Jepson Interchange    

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

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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.

LEPIDIUM

PEPPERGRASS, PEPPERWORT

Annual to shrub; hairs 0 or simple
Leaves: basal not rosetted, generally petioled, entire to pinnately lobed; cauline short-petioled to sessile, sometimes clasping or surrounding stem
Flower small; sepals erect or spreading, oblong to ovate, shed early or persistent; petals linear to obovate, generally white, rarely yellowish, sometimes bristle-like or 0; stamens 6, 4, or 2
Fruit dehiscent, oblong to elliptic or obcordate, flat perpendicular to septum; pedicel cylindric or flat, winged or not
Seeds 1 per chamber, gelatinous when wetted; wing narrow or 0; embryonic root at back of 1 cotyledon, rarely at edges of both
Species in genus: ± 175 species: ± worldwide
Etymology: (Greek: little scale, from fruit)
Reference: [Hitchcock 1936 Madroño 3:265–300]

Native

L. ramosissimum A. Nelson var. bourgeauanum (Thell.) Rollins

Biennial
Stem erect, 1.5–6 dm, leafy; branches many, suberect; hairs sparse to dense, fine, ± reflexed
Leaves: basal pinnately lobed, lobes ± dentate; upper cauline linear, entire, rarely minutely dentate
Inflorescence: upper bractless, overtopping axillary ones
Flower: sepals ± 1 mm; petals 0 or ± vestigial, white; stamens 2
Fruit 2.5–3 mm, 1.5–2 mm wide, ovate to obovate, glabrous; valve tips ± acute; notch ± 0.2 mm; pedicel spreading to ascending, = or > fruit, ± flat, densely puberulent; style 0
Seed not margined
Chromosomes: 2n=32
Ecology: Roadsides, alkaline soils
Elevation: < 1000 m.
Bioregional distribution: Cascade Range, n Sacramento Valley, Southwestern California
Distribution outside California: widespread N.America
Synonyms: L. densiflorum var. b. (Thell.) C.L. Hitchc
Possibly alien in CA; 3 vars. total.

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