Jepson Flora Project: Jepson Interchange    

link to manual TREATMENT FROM THE JEPSON MANUAL (1993) previous taxon | next taxon
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.



Steven R. Hill, except as specified

Annual, perennial herb, shrubs, trees, generally stellate-hairy; juice sticky; inner bark tough, fibrous
Leaves alternate, simple, petioled; blade generally palmately veined or lobed, stipules present
Inflorescence often leafy; whorl or involucre of bractlets often subtending calyx
Flower generally bisexual, radial; calyx lobes 5, margins abutting in bud; petals 5, free (fused at base to filament tube, so falling together); stamens many, filaments fused into a tube surrounding style, tube fused in turn to petal bases; pistil 1, ovary superior, chambers generally 5 or more, style branches, stigmas generally 1 or 2 X as many as chambers
Fruit of 5–many disk- or wedge-shaped segments, loculicidal capsule, or berry
Genera in family: 100 genera, 2000 species: worldwide, especially warm regions; some cultivated (e.g., Abelmoschus , okra; Alcea ; Gossypium , cotton; Hibiscus , Malvaviscus )
Recent taxonomic note: Recently treated to include Sterculiaceae [Angiosperm phylogeny Group 1998 Ann Missouri Bot Gard 85:531–553; Alverson et al. 1999 Amer J Bot 86:1474–1486; Bayer et al. 1999 Bot J Linn Soc 129:267–303]
Mature fruit important for identification.



John C. La Duke

Annual, perennial herb, stellate-hairy
Leaf petioled; blade linear-lanceolate to triangular, entire to deeply dissected
Inflorescence: panicle or raceme-like (unbranched except for clusters in axils)
Flower: petals obovate, red-orange, white, or lavender; filament tube glabrous or stellate-hairy, anthers yellow or purple; stigmas head-like
Fruit breaking into 9–17 segments; upper part of segment dehiscent, smooth; lower part indehiscent, strongly net-veined, 1–2-seeded
Seeds gray, black, or brown
Species in genus: ± 50 species: warm Am, s Africa
Etymology: (Greek: globe mallow, from fruit shape)
Reference: [Kearney 1935 Univ Calif Publ Bot 19:1–128]
Polyploidy and intermediates common.


S. coulteri (S. Watson) A. Gray

Annual; hairs few, long, soft
Stem sprawling to erect, 1.5–15 dm, slender
Leaf: blade 15–45 mm, sometimes wider than long, ± triangular or cordate, thin, soft, gray-green, lobes 3 or 5, rounded, coarsely toothed
Inflorescence generally raceme-like (flowers clustered in axils); tip generally leafy
Flower: pedicel > calyx; petals < 11 mm, salmon-orange; filament tube ± 5 mm, hairy, anthers yellow
Fruit: segments ± 15, 1.5–2 mm, 2–2.5 mm wide, ± hemispheric; dehiscent part ± 1 mm, flat, ± 30% of segment, projecting toward fruit axis
Seed 1 per segment, brown, glabrous or ± hairy
Ecology: Uncommon. Dry, sandy places
Elevation: < 300 m.
Bioregional distribution: s Sonoran Desert
Distribution outside California: Arizona, Mexico
Flowering time: Mar–May
Horticultural information: TRY.

previous taxon | next taxon
bioregional map for SPHAERALCEA%20coulteri being generated

Retrieve Jepson Interchange Index to Plant Names entry for Sphaeralcea coulteri
Retrieve dichotomous key for Sphaeralcea
Overlay Consortium of California Herbaria specimen data by county on this map
Show other taxa with the same California distribution | Read about bioregions | Get lists of plants in a bioregion
Return to the Jepson Interchange main page
Return to treatment index page

University & Jepson Herbaria Home Page |
General Information | University Herbarium | Jepson Herbarium |
Visiting the Herbaria | On-line Resources | Research |
Education | Related Sites
Copyright © by the Regents of the University of California