Jepson Flora Project: Jepson Interchange    

 
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Jepson Interchange (more information)
©Copyright 1993 by the Regents of the University of California
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POLYGALACEAE

MILKWORT FAMILY

Thomas L. Wendt

Annual, perennial herb, shrub, tree, vine, some non-green, dependent on fungi for nutrition; hairs unbranched
Leaves simple, generally alternate (rarely opposite or whorled); veins pinnate; margin generally ± entire; stipules generally 0
Inflorescence: raceme, spike, or panicle
Flower bisexual, generally bilateral (appearing ± pea-flower-like) or ± radial; sepals 5, free or fused, lateral (inner) pair often larger and petal-like (wings); petals 5 or 3, individually fused to stamen tube, ± similar or different with 1 lower keel petal, 2 strap-like upper petals, and 0 or 2 small lateral petals; stamens 3–10, ± fused, tube open on upper side; ovary chambers 1–8, ovule 1 per chamber, style 1 or 0
Fruit: capsule, drupe, or nut, sometimes winged
Seed often with aril
Genera in family: 18 genera, 800 species: especially tropical, subtropical; very few cultivated
Reference: [Blake 1924 N Amer Fl 25:305–379]

POLYGALA

MILKWORT

Annual, perennial herb, shrub, tree, vine; roots generally with wintergreen odor
Inflorescence: raceme or spike, sometimes grouped and panicle-like
Flower bilateral; lateral 2 sepals enlarged as wings; petals 3 or 5, keel petal often with cylindric beak or fringed crest at tip; stamens 6–8, anthers dehiscent at tip, appearing 1-chambered; nectary disk or gland present; ovary chambers 2, stigma 2-lobed
Fruit: capsule
Seed fusiform or ovoid, black, generally hairy, generally with prominent white aril on one end
Species in genus: ± 500 species: tropical, temp
Etymology: (Greek: much milk, some Eur species said to increase milk flow in cows)
Reference: [Wendt 1979 J Arnold Arbor 60:504–514]

Native

P. cornuta Kellogg

Perennial, shrub, often from rhizomes
Stem prostrate to erect, < 25 dm
Leaf 10–65 mm, linear to ovate
Flower 7–14 mm; wings ciliate, glabrous to puberulent, cream or greenish to pink; beak of keel-petal 0.5–2.5 mm, entire, ± 0.2 mm diam near tip, dull rose to green when pollen shed
Fruit 5.9–10 mm including stalk, thick-textured, dark yellow-brown; veins obscure
Seed 4.5–7.3 mm including hairs; aril with shaggy hairs
Chromosomes: n=9
Ecology: Chaparral, open forest, exposed slopes
Elevation: 100–2100 m.
Bioregional distribution: Klamath Ranges, Cascade Range, Sierra Nevada, s Outer South Coast Ranges, Transverse Ranges, Peninsular Ranges
Distribution outside California: n Baja California
Varieties intergrade in s SCoRO, WTR.

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bioregional map for POLYGALA%20cornuta being generated
 
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Retrieve Jepson Interchange Index to Plant Names entry for Polygala cornuta
Retrieve dichotomous key for Polygala
Retrieve multiple-entry key (MEKA) for Polygala
Overlay Consortium of California Herbaria specimen data by county on this map
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