Jepson Flora Project: Jepson Interchange    

link to manual TREATMENT FROM THE JEPSON MANUAL (1993) previous taxon | next taxon
Jepson Interchange (more information)
©Copyright 1993 by the Regents of the University of California

  • Up-to-date information about California vascular plants is available from the Jepson eFlora.



Lincoln Constance

Annual, biennial, perennial herb (rarely shrub, tree), often from taproot
Stem often ± scapose, generally ribbed, hollow
Leaves basal and generally some cauline, generally alternate; stipules generally 0; petiole base generally sheathing stem; blade generally much dissected, sometimes compound
Inflorescence: umbel or head, simple or compound, generally peduncled; bracts present (in involucres) or not; bractlets generally present (in involucels)
Flowers many, small, generally bisexual (or some staminate), generally radial (or outer bilateral); calyx 0 or lobes 5, small, atop ovary; 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 on top subtending 2 free styles
Fruit: 2 dry, 1-seeded halves that separate from each other but generally remain attached for some time to a central axis; ribs on each half 5, 2 marginal and 3 on back; oil tubes 1–several per interval between ribs
Genera in family: 300 genera, 3,000 species: ± worldwide, especially temp; many cultivated for food or spice (e.g., Carum, caraway; Daucus; Petroselinum); some highly toxic (e.g., Conium). Underground structures here called roots, but true nature remains problematic. Mature fruit generally critical in identification; shapes generally given in outline, followed by shape in X -section of 2 fruit halves together.


Perennial, nearly glabrous to hairy; roots thick, clustered, licorice-scented
Stem branched, leafy
Leaf: blade oblong to triangular-ovate, 2-pinnate or ternate-pinnate or 2–3-ternate, leaflets lanceolate to round
Inflorescence: umbels compound; bracts 0; bractlets 0–several and conspicuous; rays, pedicels few, spreading-ascending to spreading
Flower: calyx lobes 0; petals obovate, white, purple, or greenish yellow (white), tips narrowed; disk sometimes present
Fruit linear to oblong, cylindric to club-shaped, slightly compressed side-to-side, bristly to glabrous; base obtuse or long-tapered into tail, tip tapered into beak or obtuse; ribs thread-like; oil tubes per rib-interval obscure; fruit axis divided in upper 1/2
Seed: face concave or grooved
Species in genus: ± 10 species: Am, e&s Asia
Etymology: (Greek: sweet root)
Reference: [Lowry & Jones 1985 Ann Missouri Bot Gard 71:1128–1171]


O. purpurea (J.M. Coult. & Rose) Suksd.

Plant 2–6 dm, glabrous to very sparsely fine-hairy
Leaf: petiole 5–12 cm; blade 3–10 cm wide, triangular-ovate to round, 2–3-ternate, leaflets 1.5–7 cm, lanceolate to ovate, coarsely serrate to irregularly cut or lobed
Inflorescence: peduncle 3–10 cm; bractlets 0; rays 2–6, 3–9.5 cm, spreading-ascending; pedicels 5–25 mm
Flower: corolla purple or rarely greenish white; styles 0.4–0.8 mm; projection atop ovary depressed-conic; disk conspicuous
Fruit 8–15 mm, linear-fusiform; tail 1–5 mm; tip narrowed below, beaked; ribs bristly at base
Chromosomes: 2n=22
Ecology: Damp coniferous forest
Elevation: 150–2200 m.
Bioregional distribution: North Coast (Del Norte Co.)
Distribution outside California: to Alaska, Montana

previous taxon | next taxon
bioregional map for OSMORHIZA%20purpurea being generated

Retrieve Jepson Interchange Index to Plant Names entry for Osmorhiza purpurea
Retrieve dichotomous key for Osmorhiza
Overlay Consortium of California Herbaria specimen data by county on this map
Show other taxa with the same California distribution | Read about bioregions | Get lists of plants in a bioregion
Return to the Jepson Interchange main page
Return to treatment index page

University & Jepson Herbaria Home Page |
General Information | University Herbarium | Jepson Herbarium |
Visiting the Herbaria | On-line Resources | Research |
Education | Related Sites
Copyright © by the Regents of the University of California