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. pumila (Standl.) Standl.

Stem trailing to ascending, < 5 dm, short-hairy, often glandular
Leaf: blade 2–6 cm, triangular to broadly ovate, fleshy, hairy like stems
Inflorescence: involucres in axils or narrow clusters, cup-shaped, densely glandular-hairy, enlarged and papery in fruit; bracts 5, 7–8 mm in fruit, ± 2/3 fused; flowers 3 per involucre
Flower: perianth 8–10 mm, broadly funnel-shaped, pale pink, hairy
Fruit ± 5 mm, club-shaped, shallowly wrinkled between 5 wide ribs
Ecology: Dry, rocky places
Elevation: 1400–2500 m.
Bioregional distribution: San Bernardino Mountains, San Jacinto Mountains, White and Inyo Mountains, Desert Mountains
Distribution outside California: to Nevada, New Mexico, nw Mexico
Flowering time: Jun–Aug
Synonyms: Oxybaphus p. (Standley) Standley
The concept for this species and M. oblongifolia in CA is tentative and is likely to change
Horticultural information: TRY.

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