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.



Dieter H. Wilken, except as specified

Annual to tree, sometimes monoecious or dioecious, glandular or with bead-like hairs that collapse with age, becoming scaly or powdery
Stem often fleshy
Leaves generally alternate, entire to lobed; veins generally pinnate
Inflorescence: raceme, spike, catkin-like, or spheric cluster, or flower 1; bracts 0–few
Flower: sepals 1–5, often 0 in pistillate flowers, free or fused, generally persistent in fruit; petals 0; stamens 0–5; ovary generally superior, chamber 1, ovule 1, styles 1–3
Fruit: generally utricle
Seed 1, vertical (fruit compressed side-to-side) or horizontal (fruit compressed top-to-bottom)
Genera in family: 100 genera, 1300 species: worldwide, especially deserts, saline or alkaline soils; some cultivated for food (Beta , beets, chard; Chenopodium , quinoa)
Recent taxonomic note: Recently treated in expanded Amaranthaceae


Perennial, glabrous, rhizomed
Stem decumbent to erect; branches paired
Leaves opposite, linear to ovate, fleshy, sessile to clasping
Inflorescence axillary; bracts generally 2, unequal; flowers 1–3 per cluster
Flower: sepals 5(–7), enclosing fruit, papery; sides overlapping; back ribbed; stamens 5, included; stigmas 2, persistent in fruit
Fruit ± 2 mm
Seed vertical, black
Species in genus: ± 8 species: temp Am
Etymology: (Greek: soda loving)


N. occidentalis (Nutt.) Moq.

Plant 7–30 cm
Stem decumbent to erect; internodes = or > leaves
Leaf 5–16 mm, linear to oblong
Flower: sepals 1–2 mm, white or pink, becoming white
Ecology: Moist, alkaline soils
Elevation: < 1500 m.
Bioregional distribution: Cascade Range Foothills, Great Central Valley, South Coast, w Peninsular Ranges, Great Basin Floristic Province, Mojave Desert
Distribution outside California: to e Oregon, Utah, n Mexico
Flowering time: May–Oct

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bioregional map for NITROPHILA%20occidentalis being generated

Retrieve Jepson Interchange Index to Plant Names entry for Nitrophila occidentalis
Retrieve dichotomous key for Nitrophila
Retrieve multiple-entry key (MEKA) for Nitrophila
Overlay Consortium of California Herbaria specimen data by county on this map
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