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Vascular Plants of California
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Nasturtium officinale
WATER CRESS


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: NasturtiumView DescriptionDichotomous Key


Habit: Perennial herb, aquatic, rhizomatous; hairs simple or 0. Stem: prostrate to erect, rooting at proximal nodes. Leaf: pinnately compound, petioled, base lobed or not, simple in deeply submersed pls. Inflorescence: elongated; bracts 0 or subtending proximal flowers. Flower: sepals erect to ascending, base or lateral pair not sac-like; petals white (pink), not clawed. Fruit: silique, dehiscent, linear, cylindric, unsegmented; stigma entire. Seed: 24--60, in 1 or 2 rows; wing 0.
Species In Genus: 5 species: worldwide. Etymology: (Latin: nose distortion, in reference to plant pungency)
eFlora Treatment Author: Ihsan A. Al-Shehbaz
Reference: Al-Shehbaz & Price 1998 Novon 8:124--126
Nasturtium officinale W.T. Aiton
NATIVE
Habit: Plant +- glabrous (sparsely hairy). Stem: erect to decumbent, branched, 1--11(20) dm. Leaf: 2--15(20) cm; leaflets 3--9(13), (0.4)1--4(5) cm, (0.3)0.7--2.5(4) cm wide, round to ovate, oblong, or lanceolate, dentate to entire. Flower: sepals 2--3.5 mm; petals 2.8--4.5(6) mm, 1.5--2.5 mm wide, white. Fruit: (0.6)1--1.8(2.5) cm, narrowed between seeds; style 0.5--1(1.5) mm; pedicels spreading, 0.5--1.7(2.4) cm. Seed: (28)36--60, 0.8--1.1(1.3) mm. Chromosomes: 2n=32.
Ecology: Streams, springs, marshes, lake margins, swamps; Elevation: < 3000 m. Bioregional Distribution: CA-FP, MP, n SNE, W&I, DMtns; Distribution Outside California: temperate worldwide. Flowering Time: Mar--Nov Note: Widely cultivated for edible greens.
Synonyms: Rorippa nasturtium-aquaticum (L.) Hayek
Jepson eFlora Author: Ihsan A. Al-Shehbaz
Reference: Al-Shehbaz & Price 1998 Novon 8:124--126
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Botanical illustration including Nasturtium officinale

botanical illustration including Nasturtium officinale

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Citation for this treatment: Ihsan A. Al-Shehbaz 2012, Nasturtium officinale, in Jepson Flora Project (eds.) Jepson eFlora, http://ucjeps.berkeley.edu/eflora/eflora_display.php?tid=34435, accessed on October 17, 2019.

Citation for the whole project: Jepson Flora Project (eds.) 2019, Jepson eFlora, http://ucjeps.berkeley.edu/eflora/, accessed on October 17, 2019.

Nasturtium officinale
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© 2004 James M. Andre
Nasturtium officinale
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© 2014 California Academy of Sciences
Nasturtium officinale
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© 2012 Neal Kramer
Nasturtium officinale
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© 2008 Keir Morse
Nasturtium officinale
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© 2008 Keir Morse
Nasturtium officinale
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© 2007 George W. Hartwell

More photos of Nasturtium officinale in CalPhotos



Geographic subdivisions for Nasturtium officinale:
CA-FP, MP, n SNE, W&I, DMtns
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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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All markers link to CCH specimen records. The original determination is shown in the popup window.
Blue markers indicate specimens that map to one of the expected Jepson geographic subdivisions (see left map). Purple markers indicate specimens collected from a garden, greenhouse, or other non-wild location.
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CCH collections by month

Duplicates counted once; synonyms included.
Species do not include records of infraspecific taxa, if there are more than 1 infraspecific taxon in CA.
Blue line denotes eFlora flowering time.