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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.

WYETHIA

MULES EARS

Perennial from stout, taprooted caudex, generally ± unbranched
Leaves alternate, generally reduced upward; petiole generally << blade, often winged
Inflorescence: heads generally radiate, 1–few, ± large; involucre hemispheric or bell-shaped; phyllaries ± many in 2–3 series, outer often ± leaf-like; receptacle ± convex; chaff scales ± linear, entire, generally ± hairy
Ray flowers (0)5–20; ligules yellow
Disk flowers many; corollas yellow, lobes short; anthers brown or yellow, tips triangular; style tips linear, tapered
Fruit: pappus 0 or crown of scales; ray achenes 3-angled; disk achenes 4-angled, sometimes ± compressed
Etymology: (Nathaniel J. Wyeth, US explorer, 1802–1856)
Reference: [Weber 1946 Amer Midl Naturalist 35:400–452]

Native

W. reticulata Greene

EL DORADO COUNTY MULE EARS

Plant 4–7 dm, soft-hairy, ± sticky-glandular
Leaves cauline; lower > upper; blades 5–15 cm, lanceolate to triangular, scabrous above, base obtuse to ± cordate, veiny below
Inflorescence: involucre 2–3 cm diam, hemispheric to bell-shaped; phyllaries ± equal, 20–30 mm, oblong or lanceolate, generally not leaf-like, outer often spreading or reflexed; chaff scales 12–13 mm
Ray flowers 10–21; ligules 20–25 mm
Disk flowers: corollas 10 mm
Fruit 5–6 mm, glabrous; pappus 0 or minute
Chromosomes: 2n=38
Ecology: Wooded slopes, chaparral
Elevation: 300–500 m.
Bioregional distribution: n Sierra Nevada Foothills (El Dorado Co.).Threatened by development
Horticultural information: In cultivation.
See the CNPS Inventory for information about endangerment and rarity.
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bioregional map for WYETHIA%20reticulata being generated
 


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