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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.


Annual, perennial herb, subshrubs
Stems ascending or erect
Leaves simple, opposite below, alternate above, generally petioled; blades entire
Inflorescence: heads radiate or discoid, in cymes; involucre ± cylindric; phyllaries in 2–3 ± equal series; receptacle flat, naked
Ray flowers 0–few; corolla ± purple
Disk flowers few–many; corollas radial or ± bilateral, white to ± purple, lobes narrowly triangular; anther tips triangular; style branches linear
Fruit 4-angled, narrowly obpyramidal; pappus of 4–10 scales
Species in genus: 12 species: sw US, Mex
Etymology: (J. Palafox, Spanish general, 1776–1847)
Reference: [Turner & Morris 1976 Rhodora 78:567–628]


P. arida B.L. Turner & M. Morris

Stems generally erect, much-branched
Leaves 2–12 cm; petioles 5–15 mm; blades linear to linear-lanceolate
Inflorescence: heads discoid; cymes ± flat-topped; involucre cylindric or ± obconic; phyllaries linear, scabrous to densely glandular
Flowers 9–40; corollas white to pink; anthers pink to purple
Fruit 10–15 mm, ± strigose; pappus of outer achenes 0 or of 3–8 scales of varying length; pappus of inner achenes of 4 scales 8–12 mm and 4 shorter scales
Ecology: Sandy places
Elevation: < 1000 m.
Bioregional distribution: Desert
Distribution outside California: Nevada, Arizona, n Mexico
Synonyms: P. linearis (Cav.) Lag. misapplied

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