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Cucurbita foetidissima

Higher Taxonomy
Family: CucurbitaceaeView DescriptionDichotomous Key

Habit: Annual, perennial herb; hairs often hard from calcium deposits; generally monoecious. Stem: trailing or climbing, 1--many; tendril generally 1 per node, often branched. Leaf: generally simple, alternate, generally palmate-lobed and -veined, petioled; stipules 0. Inflorescence: at nodes; staminate flowers in racemes, panicles, small clusters, (or 1); pistillate flowers generally 1. Flower: unisexual [bisexual], radial; hypanthium > ovary; calyx generally 5-lobed (or +- 0); corolla rotate to cup- or bell-shaped, generally 5-lobed; stamens 3--5 (or +- 1--3 from fusion), anthers twisted together, often > filaments; ovary +- inferior, chambers 3--5, placentas parietal, styles 1--3, stigmas generally lobed, large. Fruit: berry, drying or not, or capsule, irregularly dehiscent, often gourd- or melon-like. Seed: 1--many.
Genera In Family: 100 genera, 700 species: especially tropics; some cultivated (Citrullus, watermelon; Cucumis, cucumber; Cucurbita, gourd, pumpkin, squash; Luffa, loofah; Sechium, chayote). Note: Several cultivated species included Bryonia dioica reported as waifs in California (Howell 1958 Wasmann J Biol 16:1--157), but none recently.
eFlora Treatment Author: John M. Miller & Robert L. Schlising
Scientific Editor: Douglas H. Goldman, Bruce G. Baldwin.
Genus: CucurbitaView DescriptionDichotomous Key

Habit: Annual, perennial herb, from large, fleshy, tuber-like root. Stem: glabrous to scabrous; tendril branched or not. Leaf: lanceolate to round, entire to deeply lobed. Inflorescence: flowers 1 per node, staminate, pistillate at different nodes. Flower: corolla > 2 cm wide (staminate generally < pistillate), deeply cup-shaped, yellow to orange, fused part 4--12 cm, lobes generally recurved; stigmas 3, 2-lobed. Fruit: spheric to oblong, indehiscent; rind firm, smooth to rough or grooved. Seed: many, < 20 mm, +- ovate, +- flat; margin thick or raised.
Species In Genus: 12--14 species: America. Etymology: (Latin: gourd)

Cucurbita foetidissima Kunth
Habit: Herbage coarsely scabrous; tendril branched generally > 1 cm from base. Leaf: ill-smelling, 15--30 cm, generally triangular-ovate, angular, gray-green, base +- cordate or truncate, finely toothed or weakly lobed. Flower: corolla 9--12 cm, yellow. Fruit: generally 7--8 cm wide, +- spheric, green, mottled, with coarse, white stripes. Seed: 12--14 mm, white. Chromosomes: 2n=40.
Ecology: Sandy, gravelly places; Elevation: < 1300 m. Bioregional Distribution: GV, CW, SW, D; Distribution Outside California: to Nebraska, Missouri, Texas, Mexico. Flowering Time: Jun--Aug
eFlora Treatment Author: John M. Miller & Robert L. Schlising
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botanical illustration including Cucurbita foetidissima


Citation for this treatment: John M. Miller & Robert L. Schlising 2016. Cucurbita foetidissima, in Jepson Flora Project (eds.) Jepson eFlora,, accessed on May 04, 2016.

Citation for the whole project: Jepson Flora Project (eds.) 2016. Jepson eFlora,, accessed on May 04, 2016.

Cucurbita foetidissima
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© 2014 Steve Matson
Cucurbita foetidissima
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© 2011 Neal Kramer
Cucurbita foetidissima
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© 2013 Neal Kramer
Cucurbita foetidissima
click for enlargement
© 2011 Neal Kramer
Cucurbita foetidissima
click for enlargement
© 2011 Neal Kramer
Cucurbita foetidissima
click for enlargement
© 2012 Neal Kramer

More photos of Cucurbita foetidissima in CalPhotos

Geographic subdivisions for Cucurbita foetidissima:
GV, CW, SW, D;
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.