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Vascular Plants of California
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Arthrocnemum subterminale

Higher Taxonomy
Family: ChenopodiaceaeView DescriptionDichotomous Key
Habit: Annual to shrub; hairs simple, stellate, or glandular; plants in several genera scaly, mealy, or powdery from collapsed glands; monoecious, dioecious, with bisexual flowers, or with both bisexual and unisexual flowers. Stem: occasionally fleshy. Leaf: blade simple, generally alternate, occasionally fleshy or reduced to scales, veins pinnate; stipules 0. Inflorescence: raceme, spike, catkin-like, spheric head, axillary clusters of flowers, or flowers 1; bracts 0--5, herbaceous, generally persistent or strongly modified in fruit, wings, tubercles or spines present or 0. Flower: bisexual or unisexual, small, generally green; calyx parts (1)3--5, or 0 in pistillate flowers, free or fused basally (or +- throughout), leaf-like in texture, membranous, or fleshy, deciduous or not, often strongly modified in fruit; corolla 0; stamens 1--5, opposite sepals, filaments free, equal; anthers 4-chambered; ovary superior (1/2-inferior), chamber 1; ovule 1; styles, stigmas 1--4 (or stigmas sessile). Fruit: achene or utricle, generally falling with persistent calyx or bracts. Seed: 1, small, lenticular to spheric; seed coat smooth to finely dotted, warty, net-like, or prickly, margin occasionally winged.
Genera In Family: 100 genera, 1500 species: worldwide, especially deserts, saline or alkaline soils; some cultivated for food (Beta vulgaris subsp. vulgaris, beet, Swiss chard; Spinacia oleracea L., spinach; Chenopodium quinoa Willd., quinoa); and some worldwide, naturalized ruderal or noxious agricultural weeds. Note: Nitrophila treated in Amaranthaceae, Sarcobatus treated in Sarcobataceae. Key to genera revised by Elizabeth H. Zacharias to incorporate Extriplex and Stutzia, 2 genera segregated from Atriplex.
eFlora Treatment Author: Mihai Costea, family description, key to genera, revised by Thomas J. Rosatti & Elizabeth H. Zacharias, except as noted
Scientific Editor: Bruce G. Baldwin, David J. Keil, Thomas J. Rosatti.
Genus: ArthrocnemumView Description 

Habit: Subshrub, glabrous. Stem: generally many-branched, appearing jointed, green and fleshy when young, woody and not jointed in age. Leaf: opposite, sessile, base fused, decurrent, forming fleshy internode, tip obtuse to +- acute, soft. Inflorescence: spike, terminal, cylindric, dense; bracts leaf-like, fleshy; flowers 3(5) per axil, sessile, sunken in axis, free, not forming a 3-parted cavity at flower-fall. Flower: calyx fleshy, 3--4-lobed, deciduous in fruit; stamens 1--2; stigmas 2--3. Fruit: wall free from seed, membranous. Seed: vertical, seed coat hard, dark brown to black, tubercled; storage tissue (perisperm) abundant.
Species In Genus: 2 species: Mediterranean, California, northwestern Mexico. Etymology: (Greek: jointed leg)
eFlora Treatment Author: Peter W. Ball
Arthrocnemum subterminale (Parish) Standl.
Habit: Plant 10--30 cm, clumps to 1 m diam. Stem: spreading to erect. Inflorescence: larger spikes 5--40 mm, 2--3 mm wide, fertile nodes < 20, non-flowering nodes distally generally < 14. Flower: anther 0.5--1 mm, dehiscing after exsertion. Seed: dark brown, 1--1.4 mm.
Ecology: Salt marshes, alkaline flats; Elevation: < 800 m. Bioregional Distribution: GV, CCo, SnFrB, SCo, ChI, w DMoj, DSon; Distribution Outside California: northern Mexico. Flowering Time: Apr--Sep
Synonyms: Salicornia subterminalis Parish
Jepson eFlora Author: Peter W. Ball
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Botanical illustration including Arthrocnemum subterminale

botanical illustration including Arthrocnemum subterminale


Citation for this treatment: Peter W. Ball 2012, Arthrocnemum subterminale, in Jepson Flora Project (eds.) Jepson eFlora,, accessed on February 18, 2019.

Citation for the whole project: Jepson Flora Project (eds.) 2019, Jepson eFlora,, accessed on February 18, 2019.

Arthrocnemum subterminale
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© 2015 Keir Morse
Arthrocnemum subterminale
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© 2013 Neal Kramer
Arthrocnemum subterminale
click for enlargement
© 2015 Keir Morse
Arthrocnemum subterminale
click for enlargement
© 2015 Keir Morse
Arthrocnemum subterminale
click for enlargement
© 2013 Neal Kramer
Arthrocnemum subterminale
click for enlargement
© 2015 Keir Morse

More photos of Arthrocnemum subterminale in CalPhotos

Geographic subdivisions for Arthrocnemum subterminale:
GV, CCo, SnFrB, SCo, ChI, w DMoj, DSon;
Markers link to CCH specimen records. Yellow markers indicate records that may provide evidence for eFlora range revision or may have georeferencing or identification issues. Purple markers indicate specimens collected from a garden, greenhouse, or other non-wild location.
map of distribution 1
(Note: any qualifiers in the taxon distribution description, such as 'northern', 'southern', 'adjacent' etc., are not reflected in the map above, and in some cases indication of a taxon in a subdivision is based on a single collection or author-verified occurence).

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Data provided by the participants of the Consortium of California Herbaria.
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CCH collections by month

Duplicates counted once; synonyms included.
Species do not include records of infraspecific taxa, if there are more than 1 infraspecific taxon in CA.
Blue line denotes eFlora flowering time.