Jepson Flora Project: Jepson Interchange    

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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.



Michael Nee

Annual to shrub
Leaves generally simple, generally alternate, generally petioled; stipules 0; blade entire to deeply lobed
Inflorescence various
Flower bisexual; calyx lobes generally 5; corolla ± radial, cylindric to rotate, lobes generally 5; stamens 5, alternate corolla lobes; ovary superior, generally 2-chambered, style 1
Fruit: berry or capsule, 2–5-chambered
Genera in family: 75 genera, 3000 species: worldwide, especially ± tropical; many alien weeds in CA; many cultivated for food, drugs, or ornamental (potato, tomato, peppers, tobacco, petunia); many TOXIC.



Annual or rhizomed per; hairs sometimes branched
Leaves sometimes ± opposite, entire to pinnately lobed
Inflorescence: flowers 1–few per axil, pedicelled
Flower: calyx 5-lobed, enlarged and persistent in fruit; corolla rotate to widely bell-shaped, yellowish, often dark-spotted inside; stamens 5, filaments inserted on hairy band in corolla tube, anthers free, generally < filaments, opening by slits; style generally straight
Fruit: berry
Seeds many, 2–2.5 mm, ± spheric to reniform
Species in genus: ± 85 species: Am, Eurasia, Australia
Etymology: (Greek: bladder, from calyx in fruit)
Reference: [Sullivan 1985 Syst Bot 10:426–444]
Some species cultivated for edible or ornamental fruit. Unripe fruit often TOXIC. Needs further study in w US.


P. philadelphica Lam.


Annual < 10 dm; hairs 0 or sparse, simple, and glandular
Leaf generally 4–8 cm, ± ovate, entire to toothed
Inflorescence: pedicels 3–8 mm, not longer in fruit, < calyx
Flower: calyx 4.5–6 mm, in fruit 20–30+ mm, green with 10 purple veins; corolla 8–15 mm wide, ± rotate, yellow with 5 dark purple spots inside, tube hairy inside; anthers 2.5–3 mm, twisted after opening, yellow and blue-green
Chromosomes: n=12
Ecology: Waste places, cultivated fields, roadsides
Elevation: < 700 m.
Bioregional distribution: Sierra Nevada Foothills, Great Central Valley, Central Western California, South Coast, Peninsular Ranges
Distribution outside California: to e US; native to Mexico
Synonyms: P. ixocarpa Hornem
Widely cultivated for food.

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