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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; odor strong
Stems erect
Leaves simple, alternate or opposite; blade dotted with embedded oil glands
Inflorescence: heads discoid, peduncled, solitary or in ± leafy cymes; involucre ± cylindric; phyllaries in 1 series, equal, free or fused at base, gland-dotted; receptacle naked
Flowers: corollas white to greenish yellow or purple; style branches long, slender
Fruit cylindric; pappus of many bristles
Species in genus: ± 30 species: North America., South America
Etymology: (Greek: pore-leaf, from gland-dotted leaves)
Reference: [Johnson 1969 Univ Kansas Sci Bull 48:225–267]


P. gracile Benth.


Subshrub; herbage ill-scented
Stems 1–many, 3–7 dm, glaucous, glabrous; branches slender, ascending
Leaves 1–5 cm, narrowly linear, entire, glaucous
Inflorescence: heads 1–few; involucre 4–8 mm diam; phyllaries 5, free, 10–16 mm, oblong, glaucous, dotted or streaked with glands
Flowers 20–30; corolla 7–9 mm, purplish or whitish
Fruit 8–10 mm; pappus 6–7 mm, dull white to brownish
Chromosomes: 2n=48
Ecology: Rocky slopes
Elevation: < 1500 m.
Bioregional distribution: Desert
Distribution outside California: to Nevada, Texas, n Mexico
Flowering time: Oct–Jun
Horticultural information: STBL.

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