Jepson eFlora: Taxon page
Vascular Plants of California
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Dichelostemma congestum

Higher Taxonomy
Family: ThemidaceaeView DescriptionDichotomous Key
Habit: Perennial herb from corm, outer coat fibrous [membranous]; daughter corms formed at stem base above corm of previous year, cormlets formed at base of corms or on short stolons. Leaf: basal, 1--10, linear to narrow-lanceolate. Inflorescence: scapose, generally umbel-like; scape erect, generally 1(2), cylindric, generally rigid, occasionally wavy to twining; flower bracts 2--4[10], not enclosing flower buds. Flower: perianth parts 6 in 2 petal-like whorls, free or +- fused below into tube; staminodes 0 or 3; stamens 3 or 6, free or fused to perianth, occasionally appendaged; ovary superior, chambers 3, ovules 2--several per chamber. Fruit: capsule, loculicidal.
Genera In Family: 13 genera, 70--80 species: western North America.
eFlora Treatment Author: J. Chris Pires & Robert E. Preston, except as noted
Scientific Editor: Dale W. McNeal, Thomas J. Rosatti, Bruce G. Baldwin.
Genus: DichelostemmaView DescriptionDichotomous Key

Habit: Cormlets generally sessile. Leaf: 2--5, generally keeled, entire, glabrous, occasionally withered by flowering. Inflorescence: raceme- or umbel-like, generally dense; scape generally curved, twisted, or twining, cylindric; bracts +- papery; pedicels generally < flowers. Flower: perianth tube cylindric to bell-shaped, appendages on outer lobes at junction of tube, forming crown; staminodes 0 (3, stamen-like); stamens 3, equal, anthers attached at base; style 1, stigma weakly 3-lobed. Fruit: generally sessile, generally ovoid, 3-angled. Seed: sharp-angled, black-crusted.
Etymology: (Greek: toothed crown, from perianth appendages)
eFlora Treatment Author: J. Chris Pires, Glenn Keator & Robert E. Preston
Reference: Keator 1992 Four Seasons 9:24--39; Mabberley 2015 Madroño 62:137--138
Dichelostemma congestum (Sm.) Kunth
Leaf: 3--4, 4--35 cm, +- glaucous, keeled. Inflorescence: raceme-like, dense; scape 30--90 cm, +- scabrous; bracts wide-lanceolate, pale purple to green; pedicels 1--6 mm; flowers 6--15. Flower: perianth blue-purple, tube 8--10 mm, narrow-ovoid, +- narrowed above ovary, lobes ascending, 8--10 mm, crown erect, leaning away from anthers, 5--6 mm, narrow-lanceolate, deep-notched, +- purple; stamens 3, anthers 4--5 mm; ovary sessile 4--6 mm, style 5--6 mm. Chromosomes: n=9,18.
Ecology: Open woodland, grassland; Elevation: < 2000 m. Bioregional Distribution: NW, CaR, n SN, ScV, n CCo, SnFrB; Distribution Outside California: to British Columbia. Flowering Time: Apr--Jun
Synonyms: Brodiaea congesta Sm.; Hookera congesta (Sm.) Jeps.
Jepson eFlora Author: J. Chris Pires, Glenn Keator & Robert E. Preston
Reference: Keator 1992 Four Seasons 9:24--39; Mabberley 2015 Madroño 62:137--138
Index of California Plant Names (ICPN; linked via the Jepson Online Interchange)

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Jepson Video for Dichelostemma congestum

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Botanical illustration including Dichelostemma congestum

botanical illustration including Dichelostemma congestum


Citation for this treatment: J. Chris Pires, Glenn Keator & Robert E. Preston 2019, Dichelostemma congestum, in Jepson Flora Project (eds.) Jepson eFlora, Revision 7,, accessed on August 18, 2022.

Citation for the whole project: Jepson Flora Project (eds.) 2022, Jepson eFlora,, accessed on August 18, 2022.

Dichelostemma congestum
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© 2010 Neal Kramer
Dichelostemma congestum
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© 2022 Barry Rice
Dichelostemma congestum
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© 2022 Barry Rice
Dichelostemma congestum
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© 2022 Barry Rice
Dichelostemma congestum
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© 2009 California Academy of Sciences
Dichelostemma congestum
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© 2012 Gary A. Monroe

More photos of Dichelostemma congestum in CalPhotos

Geographic subdivisions for Dichelostemma congestum:
NW, CaR, n SN, ScV, n CCo, SnFrB
1. You can change the display of the base map layer control box in the upper right-hand corner.
2. County and Jepson Region polygons can be turned off and on using the check boxes.
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).