Jepson eFlora: Taxon page
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Pedicularis racemosa

Higher Taxonomy
Family: OrobanchaceaeView DescriptionDichotomous Key

Habit: Annual, perennial herb, shrub; often glandular; root-parasites, roots modified into absorptive structures. Stem: generally round in ×-section. Leaf: generally simple, generally alternate, reduced to +- fleshy scales in non-green plants lacking chlorophyll; stipules generally 0. Inflorescence: spike to panicle, generally bracted, or flowers 1--2 in axils. Flower: bisexual; calyx lobes 0--5; corolla generally strongly bilateral, generally 2-lipped (upper lip generally 2-lobed, lower lip generally 3-lobed), abaxial lobes outside other lobes in bud; stamens epipetalous, 4 in 2 pairs (sometimes 1 pair sterile), additional staminode 0(1), anther sacs unequal; ovary superior, chambers 1--2, placentas 2--4, parietal, style 1, stigma lobes 0 or 2. Fruit: capsule, generally +- ovoid, loculicidal, valves 2--4. Seed: many, small, angled; surface smooth or netted.
Genera In Family: 99 genera, 2060 species: worldwide, especially northern temperate and Africa. Note: High yield losses in many crops caused by Orobanche species in Africa, Mediterranean, Middle East, and eastern Europe.
eFlora Treatment Author: Margriet Wetherwax, except as noted
Scientific Editor: Robert Patterson, Bruce G. Baldwin.
Genus: PedicularisView DescriptionDichotomous Key

Common Name: LOUSEWORT
Habit: Perennial herb, +- green. Stem: decumbent to erect, generally 1--several from generally short caudex. Leaf: alternate, generally +- basal, generally < inflorescence, toothed or generally > 7-lobed, generally reduced distally on stem; petiole generally < blade. Inflorescence: raceme, spike-like; bracts (at least proximal) generally +- like distal leaves; pedicels 1--6 mm. Flower: calyx lobes (2,4)5, distal-most generally shortest (all generally < tube), lateral fused in pairs; corolla white or yellow to red or purple, upper lip hood- or beak-like, curved or not, lower lip 3-lobed, narrow to fan-shaped, central lobe generally smallest; fertile stamens 4, generally glabrous, anthers generally included, sacs 2 per stamen, equal; stigma head-like, generally exserted. Fruit: generally +- ovate or lanceolate in outline, asymmetric, opening mostly on upper side. Seed: smooth or netted.
Species In Genus: +- 500 species: cool wet northern temperate, circumboreal, South America. Etymology: (Latin: lice, from belief that ingestion by stock promoted lice infestation)
eFlora Treatment Author: Linda Ann Vorobik

Pedicularis racemosa Douglas ex Benth.
Stem: few to many, +- decumbent, generally branched distally, 12--80 cm, subglabrous. Leaf: cauline, 2--10 cm, +- narrowly lanceolate, serrate to dentate. Inflorescence: 1--5 cm; proximal bracts >= flowers. Flower: calyx 4.5--8 mm, glabrous, lobes generally 2 (4 in some plants); corolla 10--16 mm, +- white, +- yellow, or +- purple, glabrous, upper lip 5--7.5 mm, extended in a long, down-curved beak, lower lip 5--9 mm, fan-like; anthers 1.5--2.5 mm, base acute. Fruit: 10--16 mm, +- lanceolate in outline. Seed: 1.5--3 mm, smooth.
Ecology: Open conifer forest; Elevation: 900--2300 m. Bioregional Distribution: KR, CaR, n SNH, SNE; Distribution Outside California: to western Canada, Wyoming, New Mexico. Flowering Time: Jun--Aug Note: If recognized taxonomically, plants eastern of CA-FP with linear leaves, +- white to +- yellow corollas assignable to Pedicularis racemosa subsp. alba Pennell.
eFlora Treatment Author: Linda Ann Vorobik
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botanical illustration including Pedicularis racemosa


Citation for this treatment: Linda Ann Vorobik 2017. Pedicularis racemosa, in Jepson Flora Project (eds.) Jepson eFlora,, accessed on October 22, 2017.

Citation for the whole project: Jepson Flora Project (eds.) 2017. Jepson eFlora,, accessed on October 22, 2017.

Pedicularis racemosa
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© 2010 Keir Morse
Pedicularis racemosa
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© 2010 Keir Morse
Pedicularis racemosa
click for enlargement
© 2010 Keir Morse
Pedicularis racemosa
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© 2010 Keir Morse
Pedicularis racemosa
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© 2014 Steve Matson
Pedicularis racemosa var. alba
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© 2015 Barry Breckling

More photos of Pedicularis racemosa in CalPhotos

Geographic subdivisions for Pedicularis racemosa:
KR, CaR, n SNH, SNE;
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).

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.