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John Bleck, Wayne R. Ferren Jr., Nancy J. Vivrette

Annual, perennial herb, shrub, generally fleshy
Stem underground or prostrate to erect
Leaves generally simple, generally cauline, generally opposite; stipule generally 0; blade generally glabrous, often glaucous
Inflorescence: cyme or flower solitary
Flower generally bisexual, radial; hypanthium present; sepals 3–8; petals generally many in several whorls, free or fused at base, linear, sometimes 0; stamens 1–many, free or fused in groups, outer often petal-like; nectary a ring or separate glands; pistil 1, ovary superior to inferior, chambers 1–20, placentas generally parietal, styles 0–20, stigmas 1–20
Fruit: generally capsule, opening by flaps or circumscissile, or berry or nut
Seeds 1–many per chamber, often with aril
Genera in family: 130 genera, 2500 species: generally subtropical, especially s Africa; many cultivated, some waifs in CA (e.g., Disphyma crassifolium (L.) L. Bolus: ovary glands convex and minutely crenate, stigmas densely plumose, fruit chambers 5, seeds ovate, ± smooth; Lampranthus species: ovary glands fused, fruit chambers 5, seeds pear-shaped, ± black, rough; both genera members of Ruschieae)
Reference: [Ferren et al. 1981 Madroño 28:80–85]
Glinus, Mollugo are in Molluginaceae.



Nancy J. Vivrette

Shrub, smooth, glabrous
Stem trailing, rooting at nodes, forming mats, < 20 dm; flower-branches ascending
Leaf fleshy, ± triangular in X -section
Inflorescence: flower solitary, terminal
Flower 3–15 cm diam; sepals 5, unequal, smaller 2 or 3 with expanded papery margins; petals free, showy, magenta, pink, or yellow; stamens many, erect; ovary inferior, chambers 8–20, styles 0, stigmas 8–20, sessile, linear, hairy
Fruit berry-like, fleshy, indehiscent
Seeds many
Species in genus: 30 species: s Africa, Chile, Australia
Etymology: (Greek: fruit edible)


C. edulis (L.) N.E. Br.

Stem < 3 m
Leaf 6–10 cm, 10–15 mm diam, widest below middle; outer angle serrate near tip, not glaucous
Flower peduncled; sepals 3–4 cm, sharply triangular in X -section, outer angle serrate near tip; petals 3–4 cm, pink or yellow aging pink
Chromosomes: 2n=18
Ecology: Common. Many coastal habitats, especially on sand
Elevation: < 100 m.
Bioregional distribution: North Coast, Central Coast, South Coast, Channel Islands
Distribution outside California: to Mexico; native to s Africa
Synonyms: Mesembryanthemum e. L
Hybridizes with C. chilensis. Extensively planted along highways and for dune stabilization. Invasive.

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