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 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]


L. dictyotum A. Gray

Annual, low; hairs dense, spreading
Stem: branched from base; outer branches ± decumbent, 2–20 cm
Leaves: basal pinnately lobed, lobes linear; cauline 1–2.5 mm wide, linear, generally entire
Flower: sepals 0.7–1 mm; petals ± > sepals, white, generally 0; stamens 4 or 6
Fruit 3–4.5 mm, ± 2.3 mm wide, notch < 1/5 X seed pouch; hairs ± throughout, rarely 0; pedicel suberect to ascending, rarely ± reflexed, 1.5–3.5 mm, very flat; style 0
Seed ± 2 mm
Ecology: Saline soils, dry streambeds, fields
Elevation: < 1000 m.
Bioregional distribution: California Floristic Province (except Northwestern California, Sierra Nevada, Central Coast), Modoc Plateau, White and Inyo Mountains, Mojave Desert
Distribution outside California: to Washington, Utah, Baja California


var. acutidens A. Gray

Fruit 3.5–4.5 mm; valve tips ± ascending, > 1 mm, acuminate, ± spreading, winged, notch U- or V-shaped
Ecology: Alkaline flats, streambeds
Elevation: < 1000 m.
Bioregional distribution: Cascade Range, Great Central Valley, Southwestern California, Modoc Plateau
Distribution outside California: to Washington, Baja California
Synonyms: L. oxycarpum var. a. Jeps

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