Jepson eFlora: Taxon page
Key to families | Table of families and genera
Previous taxon Index to accepted names and synonyms:
| A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I | J | K | L | M | N | O | P | Q | R | S | T | U | V | W | X | Y | Z |
Next taxon
Descurainia sophia

Higher Taxonomy
Family: Brassicaceae (Cruciferae)View DescriptionDichotomous Key

Common Name: MUSTARD FAMILY
Habit: Annual to shrub; sap pungent, watery. Leaf: generally simple, alternate; generally both basal, cauline; stipules 0. Inflorescence: generally raceme, generally not bracted. Flower: bisexual, generally radial; sepals 4, generally free; petals (0)4, forming a cross, generally white or yellow to purple; stamens generally 6 (2 or 4), 4 long, 2 short (3 pairs of unequal length); ovary 1, superior, generally 2-chambered with septum connecting 2 parietal placentas; style 1, stigma entire or 2-lobed. Fruit: capsule, generally 2-valved, "silique" (length >= 3 × width) or "silicle" (length < 3 × width), dehiscent by 2 valves or indehiscent, cylindric or flat parallel or perpendicular to septum, segmented or not. Seed: 1--many, in 1 or 2 rows per chamber, winged or wingless; embryo strongly curved.
Genera In Family: +- 330 genera, 3780 species: worldwide, especially temperate. Note: Highest diversity in Mediterranean area, mountains of southwestern Asia, adjacent central Asia, western North America; some Brassica species are oil or vegetable crops; Arabidopsis thaliana used in experimental molecular biology; many species are ornamentals, weeds. Aurinia saxatilis (L.) Desvaux in cultivation only. Aubrieta occasional waif in central NCoR, Carrichtera annua (L.) DC. in SCo, Iberis sempervirens L., Iberis umbellata L. in PR, Teesdalia coronopifolia (Bergeret) Thell., Teesdalia nudicaulis (L.) W.T. Aiton in southern NCoRO, CCo. Cardaria, Coronopus moved to Lepidium; Caulostramina to Hesperidanthus; Guillenia to Caulanthus; Heterodraba to Athysanus; California taxa of Lesquerella to Physaria; Malcolmia africana to Strigosella.
eFlora Treatment Author: Ihsan A. Al-Shehbaz, except as noted
Scientific Editor: Douglas H. Goldman, Bruce G. Baldwin.
Genus: DescurainiaView DescriptionDichotomous Key

Common Name: TANSY MUSTARD
Habit: Annual, biennial (perennial herb); hairs minute, many-branched, tree-like, occasionally mixed with fewer simple hairs, club-shaped glandular papillae occasionally present. Stem: generally branched distally. Leaf: petioled, finely 1--3-pinnately lobed or divided, basal generally early-deciduous; cauline similar to basal, less divided distally on stem, base not lobed. Inflorescence: elongating. Flower: sepals erect to spreading, base not sac-like; petals obovate, yellow [+- white]. Fruit: silique or silicle, dehiscent, linear, oblong, club-shaped, ellipsoid, or obovoid, not flattened, unsegmented; stigma entire. Seed: 5--100, in 1 or 2 rows, ellipsoid to oblong, plump; wing 0.
Species In Genus: 45--47 species: Eurasia, especially North America and South America, Canary Islands. Etymology: (F. Descourain, French botanist, 1658--1740) Toxicity: May be TOXIC to livestock. Note: Taxonomically difficult, most characters highly variable.
Unabridged Note: A taxonomically difficult genus due to extensive variation and continuity in most characters. The extensive interspecific hybridization, polyploidy, fertility among species, weedy tendencies of hybrids and parents, and lack of reliable morphological characters make it difficult to delimit taxa. Numerous infraspecific taxa have been recognized, but without extensive cytological, molecular, and experimental studies, recognition of narrowly defined taxa is neither practical nor useful.

Descurainia sophia (L.) Webb ex Prantl
NATURALIZED
Habit: Annual, hairy throughout or glabrous distally, nonglandular. Stem: erect, simple or branched distally, (1)2--7(10) dm. Leaf: basal, proximal cauline 2- or 3-pinnately lobed, 1--10(15) cm, oblong to widely ovate; ultimate lobes 2--10 mm, linear or oblong, entire; distal cauline sessile or short petioled, ultimate segments narrower. Flower: sepals 1.8--2.8 mm, +- yellow; petals 2--3 mm. Fruit: not appressed, (1.2)1.5--2.7(3) cm, 0.5--0.8(1) mm wide, linear; valves glabrous; septum with 2- or 3-veined central band; style 0.1--0.2 mm; pedicel spreading to ascending, (5)8--15(20) mm. Seed: 20--48, in 1 row, 0.7--1.3 mm, oblong. Chromosomes: 2n=28.
Ecology: Common. Disturbed areas, fields, canyon bottoms, desert; Elevation: < 3000 m. Bioregional Distribution: CA; Distribution Outside California: throughout Canada, United States; native to Eurasia. Flowering Time: May--Aug
eFlora Treatment Author: Ihsan A. Al-Shehbaz
Jepson Online Interchange
Weed listed by Cal-IPC

Previous taxon: Descurainia pinnata subsp. ochroleuca
Next taxon: Diplotaxis

Name Search
botanical illustration including Descurainia sophia

Contact/Feedback

Citation for this treatment: Ihsan A. Al-Shehbaz 2016. Descurainia sophia, in Jepson Flora Project (eds.) Jepson eFlora, http://ucjeps.berkeley.edu/cgi-bin/get_IJM.pl?tid=22618, accessed on May 25, 2016.

Citation for the whole project: Jepson Flora Project (eds.) 2016. Jepson eFlora, http://ucjeps.berkeley.edu/IJM.html, accessed on May 25, 2016.


Descurainia sophia
click for enlargement
© 2014 Steve Matson
Descurainia sophia
click for enlargement
© 2014 Steve Matson
Descurainia sophia
click for enlargement
© 2007 Thomas Stoughton
Descurainia sophia
click for enlargement
© 2009 Thomas Stoughton
Descurainia sophia
click for enlargement
© 2014 Steve Matson
Descurainia sophia
click for enlargement
© 2007 Thomas Stoughton

More photos of Descurainia sophia in CalPhotos


Geographic subdivisions for Descurainia sophia:
CA;
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.
READ ABOUT YELLOW FLAGS
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).

View elevation by latitude chart
Data provided by the participants of the Consortium of California Herbaria.
View all CCH records

CCH collections by month

Duplicates counted once; synonyms included.
Species do not include records of infraspecific taxa.
Blue line denotes eFlora flowering time.