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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.



Perennial < 0.5 m, monoecious; hairs stinging, nettle-like
Stems spreading to erect, branched, sometimes twining
Leaves generally simple, cauline, alternate; stipules persistent
Inflorescence: raceme, terminal or opposite leaf; staminate flowers above pistillate flowers
Staminate flower: sepals 3(–5); petals 0; stamens 3–6(50); nectary 0
Pistillate flower: sepals 4–8; petals 0; ovary 3-chambered, styles simple, ± fused at base
Fruit ± spheric
Seeds 1 per chamber, smooth or ± rough; scar not appendaged
Species in genus: ± 100 species: tropical, warm temp worldwide
Etymology: (Latin: Tragus, name for Hieronymus Bock, German herbalist, 1498–1554)
Reference: [Miller & Webster 1967 Rhodora 69:241–305]


T. ramosa Torr.

Plant rough-hairy
Stem 1–3 dm
Leaf: stipules 1–4.5 mm, lanceolate to ovate; petiole 2–20 mm; blade 1–2 cm, lanceolate to ovate, base truncate to ± lobed, margin coarsely, sharply toothed
Inflorescence 0.5–1 cm, ± spreading; pedicels 1–2 mm; staminate flowers 2–4; pistillate flower 1
Staminate flower: sepals 4–5, ± 1 mm, recurved; stamens 3–6, = sepals, filaments ± flattened
Pistillate flower: sepals 5, 1.5–2 mm; ovary < 2 mm diam, puberulent to finely bristly, styles fused in lower 1/3
Fruit 3–4 mm, 6–8 mm wide, depressed-spheric, sparsely and finely bristly
Seed 2.5–3.5 mm, ± spheric
Ecology: Dry, rocky slopes, scrub, pinyon/juniper woodland
Elevation: 900–1700 m.
Bioregional distribution: Desert Mountains (Clark, New York, Providence mtns)
Distribution outside California: to c US, Texas, Mexico
Synonyms: T. stylaris Muell. Arg
See the CNPS Inventory for information about endangerment and rarity.
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