Jepson eFlora: Taxon page
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Geranium carolinianum

Higher Taxonomy
Family: GeraniaceaeView DescriptionDichotomous Key

Habit: Annual, perennial herb, or +- woody, generally glandular-hairy. Leaf: simple to compound, basal and cauline; cauline alternate or opposite, stipules 2, +- on stem. Inflorescence: cyme or pseudo-umbel or 1--2-flowered. Flower: bisexual [unisexual], radial or +- bilateral; sepals 5, free, overlapping in bud; petals generally 5, free, generally with nectar glands at base; stamens generally 5,10[15]; staminodes scale-like or 0; ovary generally 5-lobed, upper part elongating into beak in fruit, chambers 5, placentas axile, style 1, stigmas 5, free, persistent in fruit. Fruit: septicidal [loculicidal], mericarps 5, dry, generally 1-seeded, each persistent on 1 of 5 linear segments of beak that separate from central column by curving or coiling upward.
Genera In Family: 6 genera, +- 750 species: temperate, +- tropics. Some cultivated for ornamental, perfume oils.
eFlora Treatment Author: Carlos Aedo, except as noted
Scientific Editor: Thomas J. Rosatti.
Genus: GeraniumView DescriptionDichotomous Key

Habit: Annual, perennial herb, often +- glandular, especially above. Stem: generally 1--4 mm wide in lower 1/2. Leaf: palmately lobed to divided, +- hairy; segments generally palmately lobed and/or toothed; upper alternate or opposite; blade generally round in outline, base generally cordate. Inflorescence: (1)2-flowered. Flower: radial (+- bilateral); sepals +- awned to mucronate; stamens 10, outer 5 opposite petals (lacking anthers in G. pusillum), inner 5 alternate petals, nectary glands 5, alternate petals. Fruit: mericarp generally ovoid, dehiscent, 1-seeded; basal callus generally present, often with long bristles.
Species In Genus: +- 400 species: temperate, tropical mountains. Etymology: (Greek: crane, from fruit beak)

Geranium carolinianum L.
Habit: Annual. Stem: generally erect, 1--7 dm; hairs dense, short, spreading or reflexed. Leaf: blade 2.5--8.5 cm wide, divided 0.7--0.9 to base, segments 5(7), oblong to wedge-shaped. Flower: pedicel 3--11 mm; sepals 5--6.5 mm, smooth, short-awned; petals 5.5--6 mm, +- notched, white to rose-pink. Fruit: mericarp 3--4.5 mm, hairs dense, 0.5--1.8 mm; beak 15--19 mm, narrow tip 1--2 mm; stigmas 0.7--1.4 mm. Seed: faintly pitted. Chromosomes: 2n=52.
Ecology: Open to shaded sites, grassland, scrub, forest; Elevation: < 1700 m. Bioregional Distribution: NW (exc NCoRH), CaR, SNF, c SNH, GV, CW (exc SCoRI), SW (exc WTR, SnJt), MP (exc Wrn); Distribution Outside California: to eastern North America; alien in South America, Asia, Europe, Réunion, some Caribbean islands. Flowering Time: Feb--Aug
Synonyms: Geranium carolinianum var. carolinianum; Geranium carolinianum var. sphaerospermum (Fernald) Breitung; Geranium sphaerospermum Fernald
eFlora Treatment Author: Carlos Aedo
Jepson Online Interchange

Previous taxon: Geranium californicum
Next taxon: Geranium columbinum

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botanical illustration including Geranium carolinianum


Citation for this treatment: Carlos Aedo 2017. Geranium carolinianum, in Jepson Flora Project (eds.) Jepson eFlora,, accessed on April 24, 2017.

Citation for the whole project: Jepson Flora Project (eds.) 2017. Jepson eFlora,, accessed on April 24, 2017.

Geographic subdivisions for Geranium carolinianum:
NW (exc NCoRH), CaR, SNF, c SNH, GV, CW (exc SCoRI), SW (exc WTR, SnJt), MP (exc Wrn);
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.
Blue line denotes eFlora flowering time.