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Common (vernacular) names applied to California vascular plants

compiled by Elizabeth Painter

up to date as of May 1, 2016

Common names (also referred to as vernacular names) are applied differently at different times and places by different users. This list is compiled from many sources and is intended to be as comprehensive as possible. It is not intended to indicate which common name is correct or preferred. Please send comments about this page to Elizabeth Painter (

TaxonChaenactis alpigena
Family common name(s)composite; composita; comp; aster; asterwort; asterworts; sunflower; daisy; dandelion
Genus common name(s)chaenactis; pincushion-flower; pincushion flower; false-yarrow; false yarrow; falseyarrow; dusty-maiden; dusty maiden; dustymaiden; dusty-maidens; dusty maidens; dustymaidens; morning brides; morning-brides
Species common name(s)southern Sierra chaenactis; southern Sierra pincushion; southern Sierran pincushion; mountain-pincushion chaenactis; mountain pincushion chaenactis; Sharsmith's pincushion; Sharsmith pincushion
Common name(s) generally applied to other taxa or multiple taxaSierra chaenactis, Sierra pincushion are applied to multiple Chaenactis taxa; mountain pincushion, mountain-pincushion, mountainpincushion are more commonly applied to Orochaenactis; pincushion, pin-cushion, pin cushion, pincushions, pincushion-flower, pincushion flower are applied to taxa in multiple families
NotesSharsmith is a proper name, so upper case preferable; Sharsmiths is an error; when Sierra, Sierran are used as proper names, upper case preferable
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