Jepson Flora Project: Jepson Interchange    

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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.



Dieter H. Wilken

Shrubs, trees, much-branched, often in saline habitats
Stem: trunk bark rough
Leaves alternate, sessile, entire
Inflorescence: racemes or spikes; bracts scale-like
Flower: sepals 4–6, generally free, overlapping; petals 4–5, overlapping, generally attached below nectary; stamens 4–10, attached to disk-like nectary; ovary 1-chambered, placentas parietal or basal, ovules 2–many, styles 2–5
Fruit: capsule, loculicidal
Seeds many, hairy
Genera in family: ± 5 genera, 100 species: Eurasia, Africa, especially Medit.



Stems green, glabrous; twigs jointed, slender, often drooping
Leaves on twigs, generally overlapping, awl- to scale-like, generally excreting salt
Inflorescences generally in panicle-like clusters on current or previous year's twigs
Flower: sepals generally 5, persistent; petals generally 5, deciduous to ± persistent, white to reddish; stamens generally 5, filaments alternate or confluent with nectar disk lobes; nectar disk 4–5-lobed; placentas basal, styles 3
Seeds hairy-tufted
Etymology: (Latin: Tamaris River, Spain)
Reference: [Baum 1967 Baileya 15:19–25]
Invasive weeds with deep roots that lower water table, especially along streams, irrigation canals. Most CA species cultivated for ornamental, windbreaks; some may hybridize.


T. parviflora DC.

Shrub or tree 1.5–5 m
Leaf 2–2.5 mm, ± linear, long-acuminate
Inflorescence: spike 1–4 cm; bract > pedicel, triangular, tip obtuse to blunt
Flower: sepals 4, 1–1.5 mm, elliptic to ovate, entire to finely toothed, outer slightly > and wider than inner, acute to abruptly pointed, inner obtuse; petals 4, ± 2 mm, ± oblong; stamens generally 4; nectar disk 4-lobed, lobes longer than wide, confluent with filaments
Ecology: Common. Washes, slopes, sand dunes, roadsides
Elevation: < 800 m.
Bioregional distribution: s North Coast Ranges, s Sierra Nevada Foothills, Tehachapi Mountain Area, Great Central Valley, Central Coast, San Francisco Bay Area, Inner South Coast Ranges, South Coast, East of Sierra Nevada, Desert
Distribution outside California: to ne N.America, Mexico; native to se Europe
Flowering time: Mar–Apr
Synonyms: T. tetrandra Pall. misapplied

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