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Chrysolepis chrysophylla

Higher Taxonomy
Family: FagaceaeView DescriptionDichotomous Key

Common Name: OAK FAMILY
Habit: Shrub, tree, evergreen or not; monoecious. Leaf: simple, alternate, petioled; margin entire to lobed; stipules small, generally deciduous. Staminate Inflorescence: catkin or stiff spike, many-flowered. Pistillate Inflorescence: 1--few-flowered, generally above staminate inflorescence; involucre bracts many, generally overlapping, flat or cylindric. Staminate Flower: calyx generally 4--6-lobed, minute; petals 0; stamens 4--12+. Pistillate Flower: calyx generally 6-lobed, minute; petals 0; ovary inferior, style branches generally 3. Fruit: 1 nut subtended, partly enclosed by scaly, cup-like involucre or 1--3 nuts subtended, enclosed by spiny, bur-like involucre; mature years 1--2. Seed: generally 1.
Genera In Family: 7 genera, +- 900 species: generally northern hemisphere. Note: Wood of Quercus critical for pre-20th century ship-building, charcoal for metallurgy; some now supply wood (Fagus, Quercus), cork (Quercus suber), food (Castanea, chestnut). Lithocarpus densiflorus moved to Notholithocarpus.
eFlora Treatment Author: John M. Tucker, except as noted
Genus: ChrysolepisView DescriptionDichotomous Key

Habit: Evergreen. Leaf: leathery, adaxially +- glabrous, green, abaxially golden, with densely spaced, minute, appressed scales, margin entire or +- wavy above middle; stipules generally deciduous. Staminate Inflorescence: branched or not, stiff, clustered or not, ascending to erect. Pistillate Inflorescence: clustered below staminate on same or separate stalk, 1--3-flowered. Staminate Flower: sepals generally 6, minute; stamens generally 8--10+. Fruit: nuts 1--3, enclosed by spiny, bur-like involucre, ovoid to +- spheric, +- angled; mature year 2.
Species In Genus: 2 species: western North America. Etymology: (Greek: golden scale, from abaxial leaf)

Chrysolepis chrysophylla (Hook.) Hjelmq.
Habit: Shrub, tree < 30(45) m; top +- conic. Stem: trunk bark +- thick, rough, furrowed. Leaf: petiole 5--12 mm; blade 5--15 cm, lanceolate to oblong, adaxially dark green, abaxially golden, base tapered, tip abruptly long-tapered. Fruit: bur 3--5 cm diam; nut 6--15 mm.

eFlora Treatment Author: John M. Tucker
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Citation for this treatment: John M. Tucker 2016. Chrysolepis chrysophylla, in Jepson Flora Project (eds.) Jepson eFlora,, accessed on May 06, 2016.

Citation for the whole project: Jepson Flora Project (eds.) 2016. Jepson eFlora,, accessed on May 06, 2016.

Chrysolepis chrysophylla var. minor
click for enlargement
© 2010 Neal Kramer
Chrysolepis chrysophylla var. chrysophylla
click for enlargement
© 2010 Julie Kierstead Nelson
Chrysolepis chrysophylla var. minor
click for enlargement
© 2010 Neal Kramer
Chrysolepis chrysophylla var. minor
click for enlargement
© 2009 Neal Kramer
Chrysolepis chrysophylla var. minor
click for enlargement
© 2009 Neal Kramer
Chrysolepis chrysophylla
click for enlargement
© 2012 Julie Kierstead Nelson

More photos of Chrysolepis chrysophylla in CalPhotos

Geographic subdivisions for Chrysolepis chrysophylla:
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.