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Pastinaca sativa

Higher Taxonomy
Family: Apiaceae (Umbelliferae)View DescriptionDichotomous Key

Habit: Annual to perennial herb [shrub, tree], generally from taproot. Stem: generally +- scapose, generally ribbed, hollow. Leaf: basal and generally cauline, generally alternate; stipules generally 0; petiole base generally sheathing stem; blade generally much dissected, occasionally compound. Inflorescence: umbel or head, simple or compound, generally peduncled; bracts present in involucres or 0; bractlets generally present in "involucels". Flower: many, small, generally bisexual (or some staminate), generally radial (or outer bilateral); calyx 0 or lobes 5, small; petals 5, free, generally ovate or spoon-shaped, generally incurved at tips, generally +- ephemeral; stamens 5; pistil 1, ovary inferior, 2-chambered, generally with a +- conic, persistent projection or platform at tip subtending 2 free styles. Fruit: 2 dry, 1-seeded halves (= mericarps), separating from each other but generally +- persistent to central axis; ribs on halves 5, 2 marginal, 3 to back; oil tubes 1--several per interval between ribs.
Genera In Family: 300 genera, 3000 species: +- worldwide, especially temperate; many cultivated for food or spice (e.g., Carum, caraway; Daucus; Petroselinum); Bupleurum lancifolium Hornem. is historical garden weed; some toxic (e.g., Conium). Note: Mature fruit generally critical in identification, shape given in outline. Hydrocotyle moved to Araliaceae. Petroselinum crispum (Mill.) A.W. Hill is a waif.
eFlora Treatment Author: Lincoln Constance & Margriet Wetherwax, except as noted
Scientific Editor: Douglas H. Goldman, Bruce G. Baldwin.
Genus: PastinacaView Description 

Common Name: PARSNIP
Habit: Biennial, perennial herb, taprooted, +- glabrous to hairy. Stem: erect, branched. Leaf: blade oblong to triangular-ovate, 1--2-pinnate, leaflets oblong to ovate. Inflorescence: umbels compound; bracts generally 0; bractlets generally 0; rays 5--20, pedicels many, rays and pedicels spreading-ascending. Flower: calyx lobes minute; petals wide, yellow [orange], tips narrowed. Fruit: oblong to obovate, compressed front-to-back; ribs unequal, marginal narrowly winged, others thread-like; oil tube 1 per rib-interval, all equal in length; fruit axis divided to base. Seed: face flat.
Species In Genus: +- 10 species: Eurasia. Etymology: (Ancient name for parsnip)

Pastinaca sativa L.
Habit: Biennial, 0.5--2 m, +- glabrous to puberulent. Stem: conspicuously angled, grooved. Leaf: petiole 1--1.5 cm; blade 1.5--3 dm, oblong to ovate, 1-pinnate, leaflets 5--11, 5--10 cm, oblong to ovate, coarsely serrate and lobed or divided. Inflorescence: peduncle 7--15 cm. Fruit: 4--6 mm wide, oblong to round. Chromosomes: 2n=22.
Ecology: Roadsides, disturbed areas; Elevation: < 1600 m. Bioregional Distribution: KR, NCoRO, NCoRI, CaRH, ScV, CCo, TR, MP; Distribution Outside California: to eastern United States; native to Eurasia. Flowering Time: Jul--Aug Note: Sporadic.
eFlora Treatment Author: Lincoln Constance & Margriet Wetherwax
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Citation for this treatment: Lincoln Constance & Margriet Wetherwax 2016. Pastinaca sativa, in Jepson Flora Project (eds.) Jepson eFlora,, accessed on May 05, 2016.

Citation for the whole project: Jepson Flora Project (eds.) 2016. Jepson eFlora,, accessed on May 05, 2016.

Geographic subdivisions for Pastinaca sativa:
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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Duplicates counted once; synonyms included.
Species do not include records of infraspecific taxa.
Blue line denotes eFlora flowering time.