Jepson eFlora: Taxon page
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Vaccinium ovatum

Higher Taxonomy
Family: EricaceaeView DescriptionDichotomous Key

Habit: Perennial herb, shrub, tree. Stem: bark often peeling distinctively. Leaf: simple or 0, generally cauline, alternate, opposite (whorled), evergreen or deciduous, often leathery, petioled or not; stipules 0. Inflorescence: raceme, panicle, cyme, or flowers 1, terminal or axillary, generally bracted; pedicel often with 2 bractlets. Flower: generally bisexual, generally radial, bell-shaped, cylindric, or urn-shaped; sepals generally (0)4--5, generally free; petals generally (0)4--5, free or fused; stamens (2--5)8--10, free, filaments rarely appendaged, anthers dehiscing by pores or slits, awns 0 or 2(4), seemingly abaxial, reduced or elongate, generally curved; nectary generally present at ovary base, generally disk-like; ovary superior or inferior, chambers generally 1--5, placentas axile or parietal, ovules 1--many per chamber, style 1, stigma head- to funnel-like or lobed. Fruit: capsule, drupe, berry. Seed: generally many, winged or not.
Genera In Family: +- 100 genera, 3000 species: generally worldwide except deserts; some cultivated, especially Arbutus, Arctostaphylos, Rhododendron, Vaccinium. Note: Monophyletic only if Empetraceae included, as treated here. Ledum included in Rhododendron. Non-green plants obtain nutrition from green plants through fungal intermediates.
eFlora Treatment Author: Gary D. Wallace, except as noted
Scientific Editor: Gary D. Wallace, Thomas J. Rosatti.
Genus: VacciniumView DescriptionDichotomous Key

Habit: Shrub, [tree] glabrous to hairy, rhizomed or not, burls generally 0. Stem: trailing to erect. Leaf: cauline, alternate. Inflorescence: raceme or flowers 1, bracted; bud scales present; bractlets generally 2. Flower: sepals 4--5, 2/3 to fully fused; corolla cylindric to urn- or cup-shaped, petals generally 4--5, +- 2/3 fused, generally white; stamens 8 or 10, filaments generally glabrous, anthers elongate, awned or not, dehiscing by pores on small tubes; ovary inferior, chambers 4--5, or appearing 10 by intrusion of ovary wall, placentas axile, stigma head-like. Fruit: berry. Seed: generally many.
Species In Genus: 400+ species: temperate northern hemisphere, tropical mountains, Africa. Etymology: (Latin: for Vaccinium myrtillus L.)
Unabridged Note: Vaccinium oxycoccos L. reported from California; records lacking.

Vaccinium ovatum Pursh
Habit: Shrub, hairy, rhizome 0. Stem: erect, 5--30 dm, stout, generally not rooting; twigs not angled, +- gray. Leaf: evergreen, 2--5 cm, elliptic to lanceolate, leathery, serrate, abaxially with sparse, dark glandular hairs, veins not prominent. Inflorescence: umbel-like, axillary, dense; pedicel jointed to flower, bractlets 2. Flower: sepals 5, fused at base, lobes deltate; corolla < 8 mm, urn-shaped, lobes < tube, erect to spreading when anthers open; filaments +- hairy, anthers often short-awned. Fruit: 6--9 mm, black, glaucous or not. Chromosomes: 2n=24.
Ecology: Edges, clearings in conifer forest; Elevation: 3--800 m. Bioregional Distribution: NCo, KR, NCoRO, CCo, SnFrB, n ChI (Santa Cruz, Santa Rosa islands), WTR, PR (uncommon); Distribution Outside California: to British Columbia. Flowering Time: Mar--May
Synonyms: Vaccinium ovatum var. saporosum Jeps.
eFlora Treatment Author: Gary D. Wallace
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botanical illustration including Vaccinium ovatum


Citation for this treatment: Gary D. Wallace 2016. Vaccinium ovatum, 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.

Vaccinium ovatum
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© 2004 Steve Matson
Vaccinium ovatum
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© 2012 Aaron E. Sims
Vaccinium ovatum
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© 2015 Barry Breckling
Vaccinium ovatum
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© 2015 Barry Breckling
Vaccinium ovatum
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© 2009 Neal Kramer
Vaccinium ovatum
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© 2000 California Academy of Sciences

More photos of Vaccinium ovatum in CalPhotos

Geographic subdivisions for Vaccinium ovatum:
NCo, KR, NCoRO, CCo, SnFrB, n ChI (Santa Cruz, Santa Rosa islands), WTR, PR (uncommon);
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).

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.