Jepson Flora Project: Jepson Interchange    

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

RANUNCULACEAE

BUTTERCUP FAMILY

Dieter H. Wilken, except as specified

Annual, perennial herb, sometimes aquatic
Leaves generally basal and cauline, generally alternate, simple or compound; petioles at base generally flat, sometimes sheathing or stipule-like
Inflorescence: cyme, raceme, panicle, or flowers solitary
Flower generally bisexual, radial; sepals generally 5, free, early deciduous or withering in fruit, generally green; petals 0–many, free; stamens generally 10–many; pistils 1–many, ovary superior, chamber 1, style 1, generally ± persistent in fruit as beak, ovules 1–many
Fruit: achene, follicle, berry, or utricle-like, 1–many-seeded
Genera in family: ± 60 genera, 1700 species: worldwide, especially n temp, tropical mtns; many ornamental (Adonis, Aquilegia, Clematis, Consolida, Delphinium, Erianthis, Helleborus ), some highly TOXIC (Aconitum, Actaea, Delphinium, Ranunculus )
Reference: [Duncan & Keener 1991 Phytologia 70:24–27]

COPTIS

GOLDTHREAD

Perennial from slender rhizome or stolon, generally glabrous
Stem short, simple, stout, scaly
Leaves generally 1–2-ternate, basal, petioled
Inflorescence scapose, generally 1–3-flowered, umbel-like in fruit
Flower bisexual (or some staminate); radial; sepals 5–8, petal-like, early deciduous; petals 5–7, blade generally linear to elliptic, often with a gland at junction with claw; pistils 5–15, short-stalked
Fruit: follicles, stalked, glabrous to puberulent
Seed smooth to wrinkled
Species in genus: ± 10 species: temp North America, eastern Asia
Etymology: (Greek: cut, from leaves)
Petals sometimes considered to be modified staminodes.

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