Jepson eFlora: Taxon page
Vascular Plants of California
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Aphanisma blitoides

Higher Taxonomy
Family: ChenopodiaceaeView DescriptionDichotomous Key
Habit: Annual to shrub; hairs simple, stellate, or glandular; plants in several genera scaly, mealy, or powdery from collapsed glands; monoecious, dioecious, with bisexual flowers, or with both bisexual and unisexual flowers. Stem: occasionally fleshy. Leaf: blade simple, generally alternate, occasionally fleshy or reduced to scales, veins pinnate; stipules 0. Inflorescence: raceme, spike, catkin-like, spheric head, axillary clusters of flowers, or flowers 1; bracts 0--5, herbaceous, generally persistent or strongly modified in fruit, wings, tubercles or spines present or 0. Flower: bisexual or unisexual, small, generally green; calyx parts (1)3--5, or 0 in pistillate flowers, free or fused basally (or +- throughout), leaf-like in texture, membranous, or fleshy, deciduous or not, often strongly modified in fruit; corolla 0; stamens 1--5, opposite sepals, filaments free, equal; anthers 4-chambered; ovary superior (1/2-inferior), chamber 1; ovule 1; styles, stigmas 1--4 (or stigmas sessile). Fruit: achene or utricle, generally falling with persistent calyx or bracts. Seed: 1, small, lenticular to spheric; seed coat smooth to finely dotted, warty, net-like, or prickly, margin occasionally winged.
Genera In Family: 100 genera, 1500 species: worldwide, especially deserts, saline or alkaline soils; some cultivated for food (Beta vulgaris subsp. vulgaris, beet, Swiss chard; Spinacia oleracea L., spinach; Chenopodium quinoa Willd., quinoa); and some worldwide, naturalized ruderal or noxious agricultural weeds. Note: Nitrophila treated in Amaranthaceae, Sarcobatus treated in Sarcobataceae. Key to genera revised by Elizabeth H. Zacharias to incorporate Extriplex and Stutzia, 2 genera segregated from Atriplex.
eFlora Treatment Author: Mihai Costea, family description, key to genera, revised by Thomas J. Rosatti & Elizabeth H. Zacharias, except as noted
Scientific Editor: Bruce G. Baldwin, David J. Keil, Thomas J. Rosatti.
Genus: AphanismaView Description 

Etymology: (Greek: inconspicuous)
eFlora Treatment Author: Margriet Wetherwax, Leila M. Shultz & Dieter H. Wilken
Reference: Shultz 2004 FNANM 4:261
Aphanisma blitoides Nutt. ex Moq.
Habit: Annual, glabrous. Stem: 1--6 dm, decumbent to erect, branched from base, fleshy. Leaf: alternate, gradually reduced distally on stem; proximal sessile; distal cordate-clasping; blade 2--5 cm, elliptic to ovate, entire. Inflorescence: axillary, sessile; flowers 1--3(5). Flower: bisexual; calyx parts 3(5), +- 1 mm, +- equal, concave; stamen 1; style branches 3. Fruit: 1.2--2 mm, depressed-spheric; equatorial margin +- thick, ring-like. Seed: 1--1.5 mm, round, horizontal, black.
Ecology: Coastal scrub, bluffs, saline sand; Elevation: < 200 m. Bioregional Distribution: s CCo, SCo, ChI; Distribution Outside California: Baja California. Flowering Time: Jun--Sep
Jepson eFlora Author: Margriet Wetherwax, Leila M. Shultz & Dieter H. Wilken
Reference: Shultz 2004 FNANM 4:261
Index of California Plant Names (ICPN; linked via the Jepson Online Interchange)
Listed on CNPS Rare Plant Inventory

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Botanical illustration including Aphanisma blitoides

botanical illustration including Aphanisma blitoides


Citation for this treatment: Margriet Wetherwax, Leila M. Shultz & Dieter H. Wilken 2012, Aphanisma blitoides, in Jepson Flora Project (eds.) Jepson eFlora,, accessed on September 25, 2022.

Citation for the whole project: Jepson Flora Project (eds.) 2022, Jepson eFlora,, accessed on September 25, 2022.

Aphanisma blitoides
click for enlargement
© 2015 Keir Morse
Aphanisma blitoides
click for enlargement
© 2015 Keir Morse
Aphanisma blitoides
click for enlargement
© 2015 Keir Morse
Aphanisma blitoides
click for enlargement
© 2011 Neal Kramer
Aphanisma blitoides
click for enlargement
© 2015 Keir Morse
Aphanisma blitoides
click for enlargement
© 2011 Neal Kramer

More photos of Aphanisma blitoides in CalPhotos

Geographic subdivisions for Aphanisma blitoides:
s CCo, SCo, ChI
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map of distribution 1
(Note: any qualifiers in the taxon distribution description, such as 'northern', 'southern', 'adjacent' etc., are not reflected in the map above, and in some cases indication of a taxon in a subdivision is based on a single collection or author-verified occurence).


Data provided by the participants of the  Consortium of California Herbaria.
View all CCH records
All markers link to CCH specimen records. The original determination is shown in the popup window.
Blue markers indicate specimens that map to one of the expected Jepson geographic subdivisions (see left map). Purple markers indicate specimens collected from a garden, greenhouse, or other non-wild location.
Yellow markers indicate records that may provide evidence for eFlora range revision or may have georeferencing or identification issues.

CCH collections by month

Duplicates counted once; synonyms included.
Species do not include records of infraspecific taxa, if there are more than 1 infraspecific taxon in CA.
Blue line denotes eFlora flowering time (fruiting time in some monocot genera).