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Lincoln Constance

Annual, biennial, perennial herb (rarely shrub, tree), often from taproot
Stem often ± scapose, generally ribbed, hollow
Leaves basal and generally some cauline, generally alternate; stipules generally 0; petiole base generally sheathing stem; blade generally much dissected, sometimes compound
Inflorescence: umbel or head, simple or compound, generally peduncled; bracts present (in involucres) or not; bractlets generally present (in involucels)
Flowers many, small, generally bisexual (or some staminate), generally radial (or outer bilateral); calyx 0 or lobes 5, small, atop ovary; petals 5, free, generally ovate or spoon-shaped, generally incurved at tips, generally ± ephemeral; stamens 5; pistil 1, ovary inferior, 2-chambered, generally with a ± conic, persistent projection or platform on top subtending 2 free styles
Fruit: 2 dry, 1-seeded halves that separate from each other but generally remain attached for some time to a central axis; ribs on each half 5, 2 marginal and 3 on back; oil tubes 1–several per interval between ribs
Genera in family: 300 genera, 3,000 species: ± worldwide, especially temp; many cultivated for food or spice (e.g., Carum, caraway; Daucus; Petroselinum); some highly toxic (e.g., Conium). Underground structures here called roots, but true nature remains problematic. Mature fruit generally critical in identification; shapes generally given in outline, followed by shape in X -section of 2 fruit halves together.


Perennial from taproot or clustered roots
Stem stout, erect, generally branched, hollow
Leaves: blades oblong to round, simple to ternately, pinnately, or palmately compound (rarely simple), leaflets large, lobed or serrate; uppermost cauline often reduced to enlarged sheaths
Inflorescence: umbels compound, large, often sterile at margins; bracts 0–few, often deciduous; bractlets generally present, persistent; rays, pedicels many, spreading-ascending
Flowers: marginal bilateral, with outer petals > others, 2-lobed; calyx lobes generally 0; petals wide, white, yellowish, or rosy
Fruit oblong-ovate to round or obcordate, very compressed front-to-back; ribs unequal, marginal thin-winged, veined near outer margin, others thread-like; oil tubes per rib-interval 1–2, unequal in length; fruit axis divided to base
Seed: face flat
Species in genus: ± 80 species: Eurasia, e Africa, 1 in North America
Etymology: (Hercules, presumably from large stature of some species)


H. lanatum Michx.


Plant 1–3 m, stout, strong-scented, tomentose
Leaf round to reniform; petioles 1–4 dm, widely sheathing, upper sheaths enlarged, bladeless; blades 2–5 dm wide, ternate, leaflets 1–4 dm wide, ovate to round, cordate, coarsely serrate and lobed
Inflorescence tomentose or long-hairy; peduncle 5–20 cm; rays 15–30, 5–10 cm, unequal; pedicels 8–20 mm
Flower: petals obovate, white
Fruit 8–12 mm, obovate to obcordate, ± hairy
Chromosomes: 2n=22
Ecology: Moist places, wooded or open
Elevation: < 2600 m.
Bioregional distribution: California Floristic Province, Great Basin Floristic Province
Distribution outside California: to Alaska, e US, Arizona
Flowering time: Apr–Jul
Relationship to some Eurasian taxa unclear; only native sp. in family occurring on both coasts of North America
Horticultural information: 4, 5, IRR: 6, 15, 16, 17, 24 &SHD: 7, 14, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23.

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bioregional map for HERACLEUM%20lanatum being generated
YOU CAN HELP US make sure that our distributional information is correct and current. If you know that a plant occurs in a wild, reproducing state in a Jepson bioregion NOT highlighted on the map, please contact us with that information. Please realize that we cannot incorporate range extensions without access to a voucher specimen, which should (ultimately) be deposited in an herbarium. You can send the pressed, dried collection (with complete locality information indicated) to us (e-mail us for details) or refer us to an accessioned herbarium specimen. Non-occurrence of a plant in an indicated area is difficult to document, but we will especially value your input on those types of possible errors (see automatic conversion of distribution data to maps).

Retrieve Jepson Interchange Index to Plant Names entry for Heracleum lanatum
Retrieve dichotomous key for Heracleum
Overlay Consortium of California Herbaria specimen data by county on this map
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