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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.



Elizabeth McClintock

Annual, perennial herb, generally aromatic
Stems erect, generally branched
Leaves alternate, 1–3-pinnately lobed
Inflorescence: heads generally radiate, solitary; phyllaries overlapping in several series, margins scarious; receptacle conic, chaffy; chaff scales narrowly linear
Ray flowers < 25, fertile or sterile; ligules white or yellow
Disk flowers many; corollas yellow; anther tips ovate, bases rounded or ± cordate; style branches truncate with shrub-like tips
Fruit cylindric, ribbed or angled; pappus 0 or a short crown
Species in genus: ± 200 species: Eur, w Asia, n Africa
Etymology: (Greek for chamomile, Anthemis nobilis , see Chamaemelum n.)
Reference: [Ross-Craig 1960–1963 Drawings Brit Plants 16: plates 4,5]


A. cotula L.


Annual; herbage ill-scented
Stems < 24 cm, erect, generally lightly hairy
Leaves < 6 cm, 2–3-pinnately divided; segments linear
Inflorescence: heads radiate, 1–2.5 cm diam; phyllaries ± 2.5 mm, green, margins scarious, pale brown; receptacle conic, chaffy in upper half, chaff persistent, 2–3 mm
Ray flowers sterile, 10–15; ligules 6–9 mm, white, reflexed in age
Fruit 1–2 mm; 10-ribbed; ribs with tubercles; pappus a short crown
Chromosomes: 2n=18
Ecology: Abundant. Weed in disturbed areas, fields, roadsides, coastal dune areas, chaparral, oak woodland
Elevation: < 2000 m.
Bioregional distribution: Northwestern California, c Sierra Nevada, Great Central Valley, Central Western California, South Coast, Transverse Ranges, Peninsular Ranges
Distribution outside California: native to Europe

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