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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 (

TaxonPhiladelphus lewisii
Family common name(s)hydrangea
Genus common name(s)philadelphus
Species common name(s)Meriwether Lewis's wild mock-orange; Meriwether Lewis's wild mock orange; Meriwether Lewis's mock orange; Meriwether Lewis's mock-orange; Meriwether Lewis wild mock-orange; Meriwether Lewis wild mock orange; Meriwether Lewis mock orange; Meriwether Lewis mock-orange; Lewis's mock-orange; Lewis's mock orange; Lewis's mockorange; Lewis's wild mockorange; Lewis's syringa; Lewis' mock-orange; Lewis' mock orange; Lewis' mockorange; Lewis' wild mockorange; Lewis' syringa; Lewis mock-orange; Lewis mock orange; Lewis mockorange; Lewis wild mockorange; Lewis syringa; Idaho mock-orange; Idaho mock orange; Idaho mockorange; Idaho syringa; Idaho's syringa
Common name(s) specific to synonym; taxon noted in bracketsCalifornia mock-orange [Philadelphus californicus]; California mock orange [Philadelphus californicus]; California syringa [Philadelphus californicus]; Gordon's syringa [subsp. gordonianus]
Common name(s) generally applied to other taxa or multiple taxawestern mock-orange, western mock orange, western mockorange, western syringa, wild mock-orange, wild mock orange, wild mockorange are applied to multiple Philadelphus taxa; mock-orange, mock orange, mockorange, arrow-wood, arrow wood, arrowwood are are applied to taxa in multiple families
Common name(s), rejectednot recommended: Indian arrowhead, Indian arrow-wood, Indian arrow wood, Indian arrowwood
NotesLewis, California are proper names, so upper case preferable; Lewi's is an error
Synonymy: The Jepson Manual (1993), FNA, PLANTS, etcPhiladelphaceae; subsp. californicus (Benth.) Munz; subsp. gordonianus (Lindl.) Munz; Philadelphus californicus Benth. Philadelphus gordonianus Lindl.
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