Jepson eFlora: Taxon page
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Suaeda nigra

Higher Taxonomy
Family: ChenopodiaceaeView DescriptionDichotomous Key

Habit: Annual to shrub; hairs simple, stellate, or glandular; plants in several genera scaly, mealy, or powdery from collapsed glands; monoecious, dioecious, with bisexual flowers, or with both bisexual and unisexual flowers. Stem: occasionally fleshy. Leaf: blade simple, generally alternate, occasionally fleshy or reduced to scales, veins pinnate; stipules 0. Inflorescence: raceme, spike, catkin-like, spheric head, axillary clusters of flowers, or flowers 1; bracts 0--5, herbaceous, generally persistent or strongly modified in fruit, wings, tubercles or spines present or 0. Flower: bisexual or unisexual, small, generally green; calyx parts (1)3--5, or 0 in pistillate flowers, free or fused basally (or +- throughout), leaf-like in texture, membranous, or fleshy, deciduous or not, often strongly modified in fruit; corolla 0; stamens 1--5, opposite sepals, filaments free, equal; anthers 4-chambered; ovary superior (1/2-inferior), chamber 1; ovule 1; styles, stigmas 1--4 (or stigmas sessile). Fruit: achene or utricle, generally falling with persistent calyx or bracts. Seed: 1, small, lenticular to spheric; seed coat smooth to finely dotted, warty, net-like, or prickly, margin occasionally winged.
Genera In Family: 100 genera, 1500 species: worldwide, especially deserts, saline or alkaline soils; some cultivated for food (Beta vulgaris subsp. vulgaris, beet, Swiss chard; Spinacia oleracea L., spinach; Chenopodium quinoa Willd., quinoa); and some worldwide, naturalized ruderal or noxious agricultural weeds. Note: Nitrophila treated in Amaranthaceae, Sarcobatus treated in Sarcobataceae. Key to genera revised by Elizabeth H. Zacharias to incorporate Extriplex and Stutzia, 2 genera segregated from Atriplex.
eFlora Treatment Author: Mihai Costea, family description, key to genera, revised by Thomas J. Rosatti & Elizabeth H. Zacharias
Scientific Editor: Bruce G. Baldwin, David J. Keil, Thomas J. Rosatti.
Genus: SuaedaView DescriptionDichotomous Key

Habit: Annual to shrub, glabrous to hairy. Leaf: generally alternate; blade entire, cylindric to adaxially flattened or completely flattened, fleshy, generally glaucous, tip acute [obtuse to round]. Inflorescence: cyme; clusters sessile, generally in panicles of spikes; bracts leaf-like to reduced; bractlets subtending flowers 1--3, minute, membranous; flowers 1--12 per cluster. Flower: generally bisexual; calyx radial, bilateral, or asymmetric, lobes 5, generally fleshy, rounded, hooded, keeled, horned, or wing-margined; ovary +- lenticular, rounded, conic or pear-shaped, neck occasionally narrowed, stigmas 2--4(5). Fruit: enclosed in calyx. Seed: horizontal or vertical, lenticular or flat, of 2 kinds in some species.
Species In Genus: 115 species: worldwide, saline and alkaline soils. Etymology: (Ancient Arabic name)
eFlora Treatment Author: H. Jochen Schenk & Wayne R. Ferren, Jr.

Suaeda nigra (Raf.) J.F. Macbr.
Habit: Subshrub, shrub, or occasionally annual, 2--15 dm, glabrous to hairy, glaucous. Stem: spreading to erect, several from base, base generally woody; branches spreading, herbaceous stems shiny, green to yellow-brown or red. Leaf: ascending to wide-spreading, generally not overlapping; petiole 0--1 mm; blade 5--30 mm, +- cylindric to flat, linear to narrowly lanceolate, base narrow, yellow-green to red. Inflorescence: generally open, branches thin, 0.4--2 mm diam; bracts generally < leaves; flowers 1--12 per cluster, generally on distal stems. Flower: generally bisexual, radial, 0.7--2 mm; calyx lobes rounded; ovary +- pear-shaped, stigmas 2--3, hairy-papillate. Seed: horizontal or vertical, 0.5--2 mm, lenticular, shiny, black. Chromosomes: 2n=18.
Ecology: Alkaline, saline habitats in interior and desert, occasionally coastal; Elevation: < 1600 m. Bioregional Distribution: GV, CCo, SnFrB, SW, GB, D; Distribution Outside California: to western Canada, Texas, Mexico. Flowering Time: May--Sep
Synonyms: Suaeda moquinii (Torr.) Greene
eFlora Treatment Author: H. Jochen Schenk & Wayne R. Ferren, Jr.
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botanical illustration including Suaeda nigra


Citation for this treatment: H. Jochen Schenk & Wayne R. Ferren, Jr. 2016. Suaeda nigra, in Jepson Flora Project (eds.) Jepson eFlora,, accessed on May 01, 2016.

Citation for the whole project: Jepson Flora Project (eds.) 2016. Jepson eFlora,, accessed on May 01, 2016.

Suaeda nigra
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© 2008 Steve Matson
Suaeda nigra
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© 2010 Steve Matson
Suaeda nigra
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© 2015 Neal Kramer
Suaeda nigra
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© 2011 Neal Kramer
Suaeda nigra
click for enlargement
© 2008 Steve Matson
Suaeda nigra
click for enlargement
© 2010 Steve Matson

More photos of Suaeda nigra in CalPhotos

Geographic subdivisions for Suaeda nigra:
GV, CCo, SnFrB, SW, GB, D;
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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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.