Jepson Flora Project: Jepson Interchange    

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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.



Richard Spellenberg

Perennial, shrub, tree, glabrous or hairy
Stem often forked
Leaves opposite, sessile or petioled, pairs generally unequal; blade generally entire
Inflorescence generally forked; of spikes, clusters, or umbels, each unit sometimes with a calyx-like involucre
Flower bisexual, radial; perianth of 1 whorl, petal-like, bell- to trumpet-shaped, base hardened, tightly surrounding ovary in fruit, lobes 4–5, generally notched to ± bilateral; stamens 1–many; ovary superior (appearing inferior because of hardened perianth base), style 1
Fruit: achene or nut, smooth, wrinkled, or ribbed
Genera in family: 30 genera, 300 species: warm regions, especially Am; some ornamental (Bougainvillea ; Mirabilis , four o'clock).



Perennial, subshrub
Stem repeatedly forked, decumbent to erect
Leaf generally petioled
Inflorescence forked; calyx-like involucres densely clustered or solitary in axils, bell- to saucer-shaped; flowers 1–16 per involucre, blooming sequentially
Flower: perianth funnel- to bell-shaped, lobes 5; stamens 3–5, generally exserted; stigma ± spheric, generally exserted
Fruit ± round to club-shaped, smooth to 5-ribbed; wing 0
Species in genus: ± 60 species: Am, Himalayas
Etymology: (Latin: wonderful)
Fls open in evening, close in morning. Spp. intergrade; Hermidium , Oxybaphus sometimes segregated, but intergrade with other species; careful study needed. [Pilz 1978 Madroño 25:113–132]


M. bigelovii A. Gray

Stem ascending to erect, < 8 dm, generally glandular-hairy
Leaf: blade 1–4 cm, ovate to ± reniform, glandular-hairy
Inflorescence: involucres clustered near ends of branches, bell-shaped; bracts 5, 5–6 mm, > 1/2 fused, lobes ovate; flower 1 per involucre
Flower: perianth 8–12 mm, widely funnel-shaped, white to pale pink (especially in w part of range)
Fruit ± 3 mm, ± spheric to ovoid, lightly dotted or wrinkled, glabrous
Ecology: Rocky places
Elevation: < 2300 m.
Bioregional distribution: White and Inyo Mountains, Desert
Distribution outside California: to Utah, Arizona, nw Mexico
Varieties intergrade, especially in e D. Poorly distinguished morphologically and geographically from M. californica; these may prove to be infraspecific entities in a more broadly conceived species
Recent taxonomic note: Mirabilis laevis (Benth.) Curran var. villosa (Kellogg) Spellenb.

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