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Jepson Interchange (more information)
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Annual, perennial herb, shrubs, generally bristly or sharply hairy
Stem prostrate to erect
Leaves cauline, often with basal rosette, generally simple, alternate; lower sometimes opposite, entire
Inflorescence: cyme, generally elongate, panicle-, raceme- or spike-like, coiled in flower, generally uncoiled in fruit or flowers 1–2 per axil
Flowers generally bisexual, generally radial; sepals 5, free or fused in lower half; corolla 5-lobed, generally salverform, top of tube generally appendaged, appendages 5, alternating with stamens, sometimes arching over tube; stamens 5, epipetalous; ovary superior, generally 4-lobed, style generally entire
Fruit: nutlets 1–4, smooth to variously roughened, sometimes prickly or bristled
Genera in family: ± 100 genera, ± 2000 species: tropical, temp, especially w North America, Medit; some cultivated (Borago, Echium, Myosotis, Symphytum ). Almost all genera may be TOXIC from alkaloids or accumulated nitrates
Recent taxonomic note: Recently treated to include Hydrophyllaceae [Olmsted et al. 2000 Mol Phylog Evol 16:96–112]
Family description, key to genera by Timothy C. Messick.


Ronald B. Kelley

Annual, perennial herb, subshrub, variously hairy, ± taprooted; rhizome generally 0
Stem spreading to prostrate
Leaves cauline, alternate, generally clustered, evergreen, petioled; margin rolled under, entire or ± crenate
Inflorescence ± axillary; flowers solitary or clustered, sessile
Flower: calyx ± deeply 5-lobed, not enlarging in fruit; corolla 5-lobed, generally ± funnel-shaped, tube yellow when young, appendages 0; style branches 2
Fruit: nutlets 1–4, sometimes ± tubercled
Species in genus: 27 species: w hemisphere deserts
Etymology: (native South America. name for flower)
Reference: [Richardson 1977 Rhodora 79:467–572]
Separated from Coldenia of e hemisphere.


T. canescens (DC.) A.T. Richardson

Perennial, subshrub
Stem: branches alternate; hairs ± spreading
Leaves sometimes clustered, white-tomentose; blade 5–13 mm, ovate to narrowly elliptic, veins obscure, margin entire, spiny-ciliate
Inflorescence: flowers ± solitary; bracts 0
Flower: calyx 3–5 mm, free 2/3–3/4 length; style branched < 1/3 from tip, shortly exserted from calyx
Fruit spheric, 4-grooved, not lobed
Seed 2–2.5 mm, ovoid, minutely tubercled, hairy or not
Ecology: Slopes, ridges of broken granite, limestone, gneiss
Elevation: 500–1500 m.
Bioregional distribution: Desert Mountains, Sonoran Desert
Distribution outside California: sw N.America., n Mexico
Synonyms: Coldenia c. DC

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