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  • Up-to-date information about California vascular plants is available from the Jepson eFlora.

ASTERACEAE

SUNFLOWER FAMILY

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.

STEBBINSOSERIS

Kenton L. Chambers

Annual, scapose; sap milky
Leaves ± basal, entire to pinnately lobed, glabrous or mealy (hairs drying as minute, white scales)
Inflorescence: heads, ligulate, solitary, ± drooping in bud; involucre glabrous; phyllaries ± lanceolate, outer < 1/3 X inner
Flowers 8–many; corollas readily withering, ± = involucre; ligules white or yellow, often reddish below
Fruit 10-ribbed, gray to brown or blackish; pappus scales 5, ± cut at tip, dull-white (silvery) to brownish, bristle-tip finely barbed
Etymology: (Greek: Stebbins' chicory, for G.L. Stebbins, Jr., Am geneticist, evolutionist, 1906–)
Reference: [Jansen et al. 1991 Amer J Bot 78:1015–1027]
Species in genus: 2 species: w North America. Derived by hybridization: Uropappus lindleyi X annual Microseris.

Native

S. heterocarpa (Nutt.) K.L. Chambers

Plant 8–60 cm
Leaf 5–35 cm
Inflorescence: involucre 9–30 mm
Flowers: ligules yellow or white
Fruit 4.5–12 mm, generally blue- or red-violet to brown or gray (or blackish in SCo); pappus scales > or = fruit, sometimes hairy, midrib thicker at base, tapered, bristle 3.5–8 mm, arising from notched scale tip
Chromosomes: 2n=36
Ecology: Open, sometimes disturbed sites, rocky to clay soils, generally ± inland
Elevation: < 1000 m.
Bioregional distribution: North Coast Ranges, Sierra Nevada Foothills, San Joaquin Valley, Central Western California, South Coast, Channel Islands, Peninsular Ranges
Distribution outside California: n Mexico, se Arizona
Synonyms: Microseris h. (Nutt.) K.L. Chambers; M. lindleyi (DC.) A. Gray misapplied; Uropappus l. (DC.) Nutt. misapplied
Derived from Microseris douglasii X Uropappus l
Horticultural information: TRY.

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