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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.



Grady L. Webster, except as specified

Annual, perennial herb, shrub, tree, vine, monoecious or dioecious
Stem generally branched, sometimes fleshy or spiny
Leaves generally simple, alternate or opposite, generally stipuled, petioled; blade entire, toothed, or palmately lobed
Inflorescence: cyme, panicle, raceme, spike; flowers sometimes in clusters (dense, enclosed by involucre, flower-like in Chamaesyce, Euphorbia ), terminal or axillary
Flower unisexual, ± radial; sepals generally 3–5, free or fused; petals generally 0; stamens 1–many, free or filaments fused; ovary superior, chambers 1–4, styles free or fused, simple or lobed
Fruit: generally capsule
Seeds 1–2 per chamber; seed scar appendage sometimes present, pad- to dome-like
Genera in family: 300 genera, 7500 species: ± worldwide especially tropical; some cultivated (Aleurites , tung oil; Euphorbia subsp.; Hevea , rubber; Ricinus )
Reference: [Webster 1967 J Arnold Arbor 48:303–430]
Many species ± highly TOXIC.


Annual, perennial herb, < 2 m, monoecious; sap clear or milky
Stems erect
Leaves alternate, simple, entire or toothed; stipules minute, petioled; blade base generally with 2 glands
Inflorescence: spike, axillary or terminal; bracts glandular
Staminate flower: calyx 2-lobed; petals 0, stamens 2; nectary disk 0
Pistillate flower: sepals 3 (overlapping in bud), reduced, or 0; petals 0; ovary 3-chambered, styles free, fused below, lobes 0
Fruit generally 3-lobed, separating into 3 1-seeded segments; central axis persistent
Seeds pointed; scar not appendaged
Species in genus: 30 species: tropical, warm temp
Etymology: (Latin: Benjamin Stllingfleet, British botanist, 1702–1771)
Reference: [Johnston & Warnock 1963 Southw Naturalist 8:100–106]


S. linearifolia S. Watson

Perennial < 7 dm
Leaf: blade 1–4 cm, < 2 mm wide, linear, margin entire
Inflorescence 2–7 cm; glands of pistillate bracts stalked, ± 1 mm
Pistillate flowers 3–6 per inflorescence, well separated; styles ± 1 mm
Fruit ± 3.5 mm
Seed ± 2 mm, smooth
Ecology: Dry slopes, washes
Elevation: < 1500 m.
Bioregional distribution: Southwestern California, Desert
Distribution outside California: Arizona, Mexico

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