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.



David J. Keil, Family Editor and author, except as specified

Annual to tree
Leaves basal or cauline, alternate to whorled, simple to compound
Inflorescence: 1° inflorescence a head, each resembling a flower, 1–many, generally arrayed in cymes, generally subtended by ± calyx-like involucre; flowers 1–many per head
Flowers bisexual, unisexual, or sterile, ± small, of several types; calyx 0 or modified into pappus of bristles, scales, or awns, which is generally persistent in fruit; corolla radial or bilateral (rarely 0), lobes generally (0)4–5; stamens 4–5, anthers generally fused into cylinder around style, often appendaged at tips, bases, or both, filaments generally free, generally attached to corolla near throat; pistil 1, ovary inferior, 1-chambered, 1-seeded, style 1, branches 2, generally hair-tufted at tip, stigmas 2, generally on inside of style branches
Fruit: achene, cylindric to ovoid, generally deciduous with pappus attached
Genera in family: ± 1300 genera, 21,000 species (largest family of dicots): worldwide. Largest family in CA. Also see tribal key to CA genera: Strother 1997 Madroño 44(1):1–28. See glossary p. 25 for illustrations of general family characteristics.



G. Ledyard Stebbins

Annual or perennial herb; sap milky
Stem generally 1 from base
Leaves alternate, toothed or lobed
Inflorescence panicle-like; heads ligulate; peduncles slender, subtended by scale-like bracts; involucre subcylindric; phyllaries in 2 series, outer scale-like, inner much longer, equal; receptacle naked
Flowers 6–15; ligules yellow, readily withering
Fruit oblong; tip rounded; pappus 0
Species in genus: 9 species: Eurasia
Etymology: (Greek: name used by Dioscorides)


L. communis L.

Annual, ± soft-hairy or becoming glabrous
Stem erect, 3–8 dm, leafy
Leaves 2–5 cm, ovate, thin, petioled or upper ± sessile, dentate
Inflorescence: involucre 4–5 mm; main phyllaries 8
Fruit 2.5–9 mm, outer >> inner, 20–30-veined, glabrous
Chromosomes: 2n=12,14,16
Ecology: Uncommon. Shady places
Elevation: < 1400 m.
Bioregional distribution: Northwestern California, n Sierra Nevada Foothills, n Central Western California
Distribution outside California: native to Europe

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