Jepson eFlora: Taxon page
Vascular Plants of California
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Frankenia palmeri

Higher Taxonomy
Family: FrankeniaceaeView Description 

Genera In Family: 1 genus.
eFlora Treatment Author: Carrie Kiel & R. John Little
Scientific Editor: Bruce G. Baldwin.
Genus: FrankeniaView DescriptionDichotomous Key

Common Name: FRANKENIA
Habit: (Annual) [perennial herb] to shrub, generally with rhizome; glands salt-secreting. Stem: prostrate to erect, nodes swollen, generally rooting. Leaf: opposite, 4-ranked, united by a single sheath, +- clustered, simple, 1--15 mm, salt-encrusted, generally persistent; blade obovate to oblong-oblanceolate or elliptic, generally leathery or fleshy, glabrous to hairy, margin entire, rolled under; stipules 0. Inflorescence: generally cyme, axillary. Flower: generally bisexual, radial; calyx persistent, sepals 4--7, fused, ribbed; petals 4--7, free, white to pink or blue-purple, overlapping, clawed, with adaxial scale-like appendage near base; stamens 3--12(25), 2-whorled, outer whorl shorter; ovary superior, chambers 1--4, styles 1--4, exserted, ovules 1--many. Fruit: loculicidal capsule within persistent calyx. Seed: 1--many, ivory to gold-brown.
Species In Genus: 90 species: especially coastal and semi-arid regions; soils high in salt, gypsum, or calcium. Etymology: (Johann Frankenius, 1590--1661, Swedish botanist)
Reference: Whalen 1987 Syst Bot Monogr 17:1--93
Frankenia palmeri S. Watson
Habit: Shrub 10--100 cm diam, rhizome 0. Stem: prostrate, 10--30 cm, generally with scattered hairs. Leaf: blade 2--7 mm, generally < 1 mm wide, +- fleshy, margins strongly thickened, tightly rolled under, abaxial surface densely hairy. Inflorescence: few-flowered in distal axils. Flower: calyx tube 3--5 mm, petals 3--7 mm, white, lower 1/2 generally +- pink; stamens generally 4, 4--9 mm; styles (1)2. Fruit: 2--2.5 mm. Seed: 1, 1.5--2 mm, ovoid-conic.
Ecology: Alkali flats, coastal marshes, dunes; Elevation: < 450 m. Bioregional Distribution: SCo; Distribution Outside California: northern Mexico. Flowering Time: Apr--Sep
Jepson eFlora Author: Carrie Kiel & R. John Little
Reference: Whalen 1987 Syst Bot Monogr 17:1--93
Index of California Plant Names (ICPN; linked via the Jepson Online Interchange)
Listed on CNPS Rare Plant Inventory

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Citation for this treatment: Carrie Kiel & R. John Little 2012, Frankenia palmeri, in Jepson Flora Project (eds.) Jepson eFlora, /eflora/eflora_display.php?tid=26048, accessed on February 19, 2020.

Citation for the whole project: Jepson Flora Project (eds.) 2020, Jepson eFlora,, accessed on February 19, 2020.

Frankenia palmeri
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© 2010 California Academy of Sciences
Frankenia palmeri
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© 2017 California Academy of Sciences
Frankenia palmeri
click for enlargement
© 2017 California Academy of Sciences

More photos of Frankenia palmeri in CalPhotos

Geographic subdivisions for Frankenia palmeri:
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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).


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Data provided by the participants of the  Consortium of California Herbaria.
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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).