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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.



Annual or perennial herb, generally densely glandular, aromatic
Stems 1–several, generally simple below, ± branched above
Leaves generally opposite below, alternate above, generally linear to lanceolate, entire to slightly toothed
Inflorescence: heads generally radiate, generally peduncled, few–many; phyllaries generally 1–20, free, enclosing (and falling with) ray achenes; receptacle ± flat, generally glabrous; chaff scales generally ± fused, in ring between ray and disk flowers
Ray flowers generally 1–20, sometimes minute; ligules 2–3-lobed, generally yellow
Disk flowers 1–many, sometimes staminate; corollas yellow or maroon; anther tips triangular-ovate; style tips linear to oblong, acute, bristly
Fruit club-shaped or obovoid; ray achenes compressed, thickened, or 3-angled (1 angle toward center of head), ridged, sometimes beaked; pappus 0 or of short scales; disk achenes ± symmetric; pappus 0 or of 4–10 scales or bristles
Species in genus: 21 species: w North America, sw South America
Recent taxonomic note: *See revised taxonomy of Baldwin 1999 Novon 9:462–471.
Etymology: (Chilean name)
Reference: [Nelson & Nelson 1980 Brittonia 32:323–325]


M. madioides (Nutt.) Greene

Perennial 1.5–7.5 dm
Stems ± bristly below, densely stalked-glandular above; glands golden to dark brown
Leaves 6–12 cm, opposite well up stem, fused at base, linear to oblanceolate, entire or ± serrate, bristly-strigose or soft-hairy; upper alternate, uppermost often much reduced
Inflorescence: heads few, long-peduncled, in open raceme-like or flat-topped cymes; involucre 4–6 mm, spheric to urn-shaped; phyllaries densely stalked-glandular, tip short, not flat; chaff scales sometimes fused only near base
Ray flowers 8–15; corolla tubes 1–1.5 mm, ligules 4–10 mm
Disk flowers 10–30, staminate; corollas 4–5 mm; anthers yellow to brown
Fruit: ray achenes 3–5 mm, oblanceolate to obovate, moderately bowed, strongly compressed side-to-side, obscurely 5-veined, beaked or not, pappus 0 or a minute crown; disk ovaries 3–4 mm, hairy, pappus scales 5–8, 0.2–1 mm, fringed
Chromosomes: 2n=14
Ecology: Forests
Elevation: < 1300 m.
Bioregional distribution: Northwestern California, n High Sierra Nevada, San Francisco Bay Area, Outer South Coast Ranges, Peninsular Ranges (Agua Tibia Mtn)
Distribution outside California: to s British Columbia
Recent taxonomic note: *Anisocarpus madioides Nutt.
Horticultural information: DRN, IRR: 4 &SHD: 1, 5, 6, 7, 14, 15, 16, 17.

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