Common Name: CARROT FAMILY
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.
Habit: Biennial, perennial herb; taprooted, roots clustered, or rhizomes; generally glabrous, +- spiny. Stem: decumbent to erect, generally branched. Leaf: basal rosette, cauline; petioles present or 0; blades linear to triangular-ovate or round, generally pinnately or palmately lobed or dissected (entire), generally sharp-toothed or spine-tipped, net-veined; juvenile leaves linear, segmented. Inflorescence: heads 1--many in cymes, racemes [panicles]; bracts each generally subtend 1 flower, with scarious membrane enclosing ovary, outer > to >> inner, spiny or not on margins and abaxially; rays, pedicels 0. Flower: sepals spine-tipped, generally persistent; petals oblong to ovate or oblanceolate, white to blue or purple, tip long; anthers, styles generally green, occasionally blue; ovary tip projection 0. Fruit: obconic to obovate or narrowly elliptic [round], compressed or not, densely scaly; scales at fruit tip and along juncture of carpels generally larger, longer than on face or base; ribs 0; oil tubes obscure; fruit central axis not obvious. Seed: face generally flat.
Species In Genus: +- 230 species: America, Eurasia, Australia, New Zealand. Etymology: (Ancient Greek name used by Theophrastus) Note: California species variable, intergrading, need study.
eFlora Treatment Author: Robert E. Preston, Michael S. Park & Lincoln Constance
Habit: Generally glabrous, occasionally puberulent only on leaves or bracts. Stem: decumbent to erect, 1--9 dm, slender to stout, main stem branching 2--5 cm distal to rosette. Leaf: basal < branches; petiole 5--27 cm; blade 3--10 cm, < petiole, lanceolate to oblanceolate, coarsely sharp-serrate, irregularly cut, or lobed. Inflorescence: heads 5--12 mm, +- spheric, in cymes, glabrous, puberulent or rough; peduncle 0.5--1.5 cm; bracts 6--27 mm, linear to lance-linear, margins with 0--few spines proximal to middle, 0--few spines adaxially. Flower: sepals 1.7--2.8 mm, lanceolate to ovate, entire, tip-spine < 1 mm; petals oblanceolate, white; styles 1.5--3.5 mm, occasionally +- purple. Fruit: 1.5--2.5 mm, narrowly elliptic; scales dense, unequal, lanceolate to ovate, acuminate, minutely bristled.
Note: Highly variable.
Unabridged Note: Eryngium aristulatum originally applied to slender, sprawling plants with heads <= 6 mm, fruit scales densely bristly; stout, erect plants with heads > 6 mm, fruits sparsely bristly may deserve recognition as Eryngium oblanceolatum J.M. Coult. & Rose; other varieties may warrant sp. rank.