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Calyptridium monospermum

Higher Taxonomy
Family: MontiaceaeView DescriptionDichotomous Key

Habit: Annual to perennial herb; generally fleshy. Stem: 1--many, generally glabrous. Leaf: simple, alternate or opposite. Inflorescence: axillary or terminal; cyme, raceme, panicle, umbel, or flower 1. Flower: bisexual, radial; sepals generally 2(9), free; petals (1)2--19, free or +- fused; stamens 1--many, epipetalous or not, anthers pink, rose, or yellow; ovary superior, chamber 1, ovules 1--many, placenta basal or free-central; styles (0)1--8, generally fused at base, branched. Fruit: capsule, circumscissile or 2--3-valved. Seed: 1--many, shiny or +- pebbly or sculptured, black or gray, generally with oil-filled appendage as food for ants.
Genera In Family: +- 22 genera, +- 230 species: generally temperate America, Asia, Australia, Europe, Kerguelen Is, New Zealand, southern Africa, poorly represented in Europe; some cultivated (Lewisia, Calandrinia). Note: All CA genera previously included in Portulacaceae; details of flowers, seeds require 20× magnification.
Unabridged Note: May include Hectorellaceae.
eFlora Treatment Author: John M. Miller, except as noted
Scientific Editor: Thomas J. Rosatti.
Genus: CalyptridiumView DescriptionDichotomous Key

Common Name: PUSSYPAWS
Habit: Annual, perennial herb, +- fleshy, from taproot or fibrous roots, glabrous. Stem: 1--several, generally spreading to ascending. Leaf: basal or basal and cauline, simple, oblanceolate to spoon-shaped; basal rosetted. Inflorescence: raceme, panicle, or umbel, scapose, bracts generally < sepals, leaf-like or not; flowers generally on 1 side of axis, persistent in fruit or not; pedicels appearing jointed at base with a transverse groove or constriction or not. Flower: sepals 2, ovate to reniform, generally scarious or scarious-margined, persistent in fruit; petals 2--4, < sepals, tips adherent, forming cap in fruit (fruit cap), falling as 1 unit; stamens 1--3, anthers pink, rose, or yellow; style included to exserted, stigmas 2. Fruit: 2-valved, generally compressed, narrowly oblong to +- round, generally translucent, deciduous or not. Seed: 1--many, black, dull, with fine to coarse papillae, to shiny, with papillae 0.
Species In Genus: 9 species: western North America. Etymology: (Greek: cap, for petal tips in fruit) Note: Calyptridium parryi var. arizonicum raised to species rank, as Calyptridium arizonicum, by Simpson et al. (2010) based on morphological and geographic distinctions.
eFlora Treatment Author: C. Matt Guilliams & John M. Miller

Calyptridium monospermum Greene
Habit: Perennial herb < 50 cm; caudex short, thick; taproot slender to thick. Stem: generally spreading to ascending, leafy to not. Leaf: basal 1.5--6 cm, rosette 1; cauline generally present, 0.8--3 cm. Inflorescence: axillary, umbel, +- open (dense in small plants), >= 2 per rosette, 1--10 cm diam; pedicel +- 0 to short. Flower: sepals 3--8 mm, +- round, scarious; petals 4, 3--7 mm, rose to white; stamens 3; style 2--4 mm, thread-like, exserted, falling with fruit cap. Fruit: 2--3.5 mm, widely ovate to +- round; deciduous or not. Seed: 1--4(8). Chromosomes: 2n=44.
Ecology: Open areas, sandy or gravelly soils, conifer forest; Elevation: 300--3970 m. Bioregional Distribution: KR, NCoRH, CaR, SN, SnFrB, TR, SnJt, GB; Distribution Outside California: southern Oregon, Nevada, northern Baja California. Flowering Time: Apr--Sep Note: Hybridizes with Calyptridium umbellatum in SN.
Synonyms: Cistanthe monosperma (Greene) Hershk.
eFlora Treatment Author: C. Matt Guilliams & John M. Miller
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botanical illustration including Calyptridium monospermum


Citation for this treatment: C. Matt Guilliams & John M. Miller 2016. Calyptridium monospermum, Revision 2, in Jepson Flora Project (eds.) Jepson eFlora,, accessed on May 02, 2016.

Citation for the whole project: Jepson Flora Project (eds.) 2016. Jepson eFlora,, accessed on May 02, 2016.

Calyptridium monospermum
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© 2009 Keir Morse
Calyptridium monospermum
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© 2013 Neal Kramer
Calyptridium monospermum
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© 2008 Thomas Stoughton
Calyptridium monospermum
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© 2011 Neal Kramer
Calyptridium monospermum
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© 2009 Barry Breckling
Calyptridium monospermum
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© 2007 Neal Kramer

More photos of Calyptridium monospermum in CalPhotos

Geographic subdivisions for Calyptridium monospermum:
KR, NCoRH, CaR, SN, SnFrB, TR, SnJt, GB;
Markers link to CCH specimen records. If the markers are obscured, reload the page [or change window size and reload]. Yellow markers indicate records that may provide evidence for eFlora range revision or may have georeferencing or identification issues.
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.
Blue line denotes eFlora flowering time.