Jepson eFlora: Taxon page
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Swertia perennis

Higher Taxonomy
Family: GentianaceaeView DescriptionDichotomous Key

Habit: Annual to perennial herb [to trees]. Stem: decumbent to erect, < 2 m, simple or branched. Leaf: simple, cauline, sometimes also basal, opposite or whorled, entire, sessile or basal +- petioled; stipules 0. Flower: bisexual, radial, parts in 4s or 5s except pistil 1; sepals fused, persistent; petals fused, +- persistent, sinus between lobes often unappendaged; stamens epipetalous, alternate corolla lobes; ovary superior, chamber 1, placentas parietal, often intruding, stigmas 1--2. Fruit: capsule, 2-valved. Seed: many.
Genera In Family: +- 90 genera, 1800 species: worldwide; some cultivated (Eustoma, Exacum, Gentiana). Note: Gentianella tenella moved to Comastoma. Key to genera revised by Bruce G. Baldwin.
eFlora Treatment Author: James S. Pringle, except as noted
Scientific Editor: Thomas J. Rosatti.
Genus: SwertiaView Description 

Habit: Perennial herb; non-flowering rosettes appearing with flower-stems. Leaf: basal +- petioled; cauline generally (sub)opposite or some alternate, < basal, bases not fused-sheathing. Inflorescence: cyme or panicle of dense clusters. Flower: parts generally in 5s, sometimes in 4s; calyx fused near base, lobes lanceolate; corolla rotate (bell-shaped), lobes >> tube, ridge between stamens fringed or scaled or neither, nectary pits prominent, 2 per lobe, margins of openings +- fringed; ovary sessile, style short, poorly differentiated, persistent, entire, stigmas 2.
Species In Genus: +- 135 species: temperate North America, Eurasia, Africa. Etymology: (E. Sweert, Swert, or Sweerts, Dutch botanist, florist, herbalist, artist, 1552--1612) Note: Other taxa in TJM (1993) moved to Frasera.
eFlora Treatment Author: Bruce G. Baldwin

Swertia perennis L.
Habit: Plant 1--5 dm, glabrous. Stem: generally 1; rosettes 1--few. Leaf: basal 3--16 cm, 12--30 mm wide, spoon-shaped to obovate, tips obtuse; cauline elliptic-oblanceolate, tips subacute. Inflorescence: open; pedicels 2--30(60) mm. Flower: calyx 4--8 mm; corolla 7--13 mm, blue-white to -violet, veins darker, lobes lance-oblong, acute, ridge between stamens low, nectary pits round. Chromosomes: 2n=28.
Ecology: Wet meadows, bogs; Elevation: 2300--3200 m. Bioregional Distribution: KR, n&s SNH; Distribution Outside California: Oregon (Wallowa Mountains), also Alaska to Colorado; Eurasia. Flowering Time: Jul--Sep
Synonyms: Swertia covillei Greene
eFlora Treatment Author: Bruce G. Baldwin
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botanical illustration including Swertia perennis


Citation for this treatment: Bruce G. Baldwin 2016. Swertia perennis, in Jepson Flora Project (eds.) Jepson eFlora,, accessed on February 08, 2016.

Citation for the whole project: Jepson Flora Project (eds.) 2016. Jepson eFlora,, accessed on February 08, 2016.

Swertia perennis
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© 2012 Julie Kierstead Nelson
Swertia perennis
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© 2015 Steve Matson
Swertia perennis
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© 2015 Steve Matson
Swertia perennis
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© 2009 California Academy of Sciences
Swertia perennis
click for enlargement
© 2015 Steve Matson
Swertia perennis
click for enlargement
© 2015 Steve Matson

More photos of Swertia perennis in CalPhotos

Geographic subdivisions for Swertia perennis:
KR, n&s SNH;
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.