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Jepson Interchange (more information)
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  • Up-to-date information about California vascular plants is available from the Jepson eFlora.



Gary D. Wallace, except as specified

Perennial, shrub, tree
Stem: bark often peeling distinctively
Leaves simple, generally cauline, alternate, opposite, rarely whorled, evergreen or deciduous, often leathery, petioled or not; stipules 0
Inflorescence: raceme, panicle, cyme, or flowers solitary, generally bracted; pedicels often with 2 bractlets
Flower generally bisexual, generally radial; sepals generally 4–5, generally free; petals generally 4–5, free or fused; stamens 8–10, free, filaments rarely appendaged, anthers awned or not, dehiscent by pores or slits; nectary generally at ovary base, disk-like; ovary superior or inferior, chambers generally 1–5, placentas axile or parietal, ovules 1–many per chamber, style 1, stigma head- to funnel-like or lobed
Fruit: capsule, drupe, berry
Seeds generally many, sometimes winged
Genera in family: ± 100 genera, 3000 species: generally worldwide except deserts; some cultivated, especially Arbutus, Arctostaphylos, Rhododendron, Vaccinium
Reference: [Wallace 1975 Wasmann J Biol 33:1–88; 1975 Bot Not 128:286–298]
Subfamilies Monotropoideae, Pyroloideae, Vaccinioideae sometimes treated as families. Nongreen plants obtain nutrition from green plants through fungal intermediates.


Shrub, glabrous to hairy, generally rhizomed
Stem erect to prostrate, rooting at nodes or not
Leaves generally alternate, evergreen, leathery
Inflorescence: raceme or flowers solitary, bracted; bractlets 2 or more per pedicel; pedicels jointed to flower
Flower: sepals generally 5, fused; petals 5, fused, urn- or rarely bell-shaped, generally white; stamens (5,8)10, anthers dehiscent by short separate slits, awned or not; ovary superior, chambers 5, placentas generally axile, at top of chamber
Fruit: capsule, loculicidal, ± enclosed by fleshy calyx
Seeds few–many per chamber
Species in genus: ± 200 species: w Asia to Australia, temp Am
Etymology: (J.-F. Gaulthier, botanist, physician, Quebec, 1708–1756)


G. humifusa (Graham) Rydb.


Stem low, < 2 dm, glabrous to puberulent, not glandular
Leaf 1–2 cm; base rounded to truncate; tip rounded; margin minutely serrate or, especially near base, ± entire, hairs few
Inflorescence: flowers solitary in leaf axils
Flower: sepals glabrous; corolla bell-shaped, glabrous; filaments glabrous, anther awns 0
Fruit red
Ecology: Wet subalpine forests
Elevation: 1600–4000 m.
Bioregional distribution: Klamath Ranges, High Sierra Nevada
Distribution outside California: to British Columbia, Colorado
Horticultural information: IRR, DRN: 4, 5 &SHD: 1, 2, 6, 7, 14, 15, 16, 17; acidic soil.

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