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.



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.


Kenton L. Chambers

Annual or perennial herb, generally scapose; sap milky
Leaves ± basal, narrow, entire to pinnately lobed
Inflorescence: head 1, ligulate, erect, 8–60 mm; phyllaries subequal or overlapping in 2–4 series, inner often elongated in fruit; receptacle flat, naked
Flowers generally many; ligules = to >> involucre, yellow or red-orange, readily withering, outer ± reddish below
Fruit linear to fusiform, ± 10-ribbed; beak often = or >> body; pappus of many fine, simple, white bristles
Species in genus: ± 10 species: Am
Etymology: (Greek: goat chicory)
Reference: [Q. Jones 1954 PhD Harvard U.]
Like Taraxacum but closely related to Nothocalais. Hybrids and polyploidy complicate variation in some species


A. apargioides (Less.) Greene

Perennial 10–45 cm, decumbent to erect
Leaves variable; tip often obtuse, glabrous to soft- or rough-hairy
Inflorescence: base of head tomentose; involucre 8–20 mm; phyllaries overlapping in 3–4 series, outer oblong-lanceolate, < 1/2 inner, glabrous to tomentose, glandular or not
Flowers many, > involucre; ligules yellow
Fruit: body 3–6 mm, fusiform; ribs narrow, generally straight; beak 2 X body
Ecology: Generally coastal dunes, grassland, open woodland, in sandy or clay soil
Elevation: < 500 m.
Bioregional distribution: North Coast, Outer North Coast Ranges, Central Coast, San Francisco Bay Area, Outer South Coast Ranges, n Channel Islands
Distribution outside California: to Washington
Hybridizes with A. heterophylla. Varieties weak, ± ecologically defined.


var. apargioides

Leaves generally erect, 6–30 cm, generally narrow throughout, deeply lobed, acute
Chromosomes: 2n=18
Ecology: Fields, slopes away from ocean
Elevation: < 500 m.
Bioregional distribution: North Coast, Central Coast, San Francisco Bay Area (less common in Outer North Coast Ranges, Outer South Coast Ranges, n Channel Islands)
Distribution outside California: Oregon
Synonyms: A. hirsuta (Hook.) Greene

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