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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 (

TaxonNicotiana glauca
Family common name(s)nightshade; night-shade; night shade; nightshades; potato
Genus common name(s)tobacco; tobacco plant; flowering tobacco; flowering-tobacco
Species common name(s)glaucous tobacco; common tree tobacco; yellow tree tobacco; Brazilian tree tobacco; shrub tobacco; Mexican tobacco; tabaco amarillo; tabaco moro; San Juan tree
Common name(s) generally applied to other taxa or multiple taxatree tobacco wild tree tobacco, tobacco tree, wild tobacco tree, desert tobacco are applied to multiple Solanaceae taxa; wild tobacco, free tobacco, mustard tree are applied to taxa in multiple families
Common name(s), rejectednot recommended: Indian tobacco, Indian-tobacco
NotesBrazilian, Mexican, San Juan are proper names, so upper case preferable
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