Jepson eFlora: Taxon page
Vascular Plants of California
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Glossopetalon pungens

Higher Taxonomy
Family: CrossosomataceaeView DescriptionDichotomous Key
Habit: Shrub, small tree. Stem: generally glabrous; branchlets or twigs generally thorny. Leaf: generally deciduous, simple, generally small, generally alternate, entire; stipules minute or 0. Inflorescence: flowers 1. Flower: generally bisexual, radial; hypanthium short; sepals, petals generally 5(3--6), free; petals generally white, ephemeral; stamens 4--50, on or around disk; pistils 1--9, simple, styles short, stigmas head-like, ovules generally 2--many. Fruit: follicles, 1--9. Seed: brown to black, arilled.
Genera In Family: 4 genera, 9 species: western United States, Mexico.
eFlora Treatment Author: Robert E. Preston & James R. Shevock
Scientific Editor: Thomas J. Rosatti.
Genus: GlossopetalonView DescriptionDichotomous Key

Habit: Small shrub, generally densely branched. Stem: angled, +- green, +- thorny at tips or not, hairs 0 to sparse. Leaf: small, generally deciduous, +- entire, +- sessile. Flower: petals narrow-oblanceolate, white. Fruit: ovoid, generally striate, generally beaked. Seed: generally 1--2, generally brown; aril +- inconspicuous, generally +- white.
Species In Genus: +- 5 species: western United States, northern Mexico, especially limestone in desert mountains. Etymology: (Greek: tongue petal, from petal shape)
Unabridged Note: Formerly treated as Forsellesia, in Celastraceae.
Reference: Yatskievych 2007 Novon 17:529--530
Unabridged Reference: Holmgren 1988 Brittonia 40:269--274
Glossopetalon pungens Brandegee
Habit: Plant 5--20 cm, matted. Stem: not thorny. Leaf: 6--10 mm, narrow-elliptic to oblanceolate; veins prominent abaxially. Flower: sepals acuminate, 2--3 spine-tipped; petals 6--8 mm; stamens 10, longer opposite sepals. Seed: 1, < 1 mm, light brown.
Ecology: Limestone cliffs; Elevation: 1700--2075 m. Bioregional Distribution: e DMtns (Clark Mtn Range); Distribution Outside California: southern Nevada. Flowering Time: May--Jun
Synonyms: Forsellesia pungens (Brandegee) A. Heller; Forsellesia pungens var. glabra Ensign
Jepson eFlora Author: Robert E. Preston & James R. Shevock
Reference: Yatskievych 2007 Novon 17:529--530
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: Robert E. Preston & James R. Shevock 2012, Glossopetalon pungens, in Jepson Flora Project (eds.) Jepson eFlora,, accessed on August 17, 2022.

Citation for the whole project: Jepson Flora Project (eds.) 2022, Jepson eFlora,, accessed on August 17, 2022.

Glossopetalon pungens
click for enlargement
© 2010 James M. Andre
Glossopetalon pungens
click for enlargement
© 2010 James M. Andre
Glossopetalon pungens
click for enlargement
© 2010 James M. Andre
Glossopetalon pungens
click for enlargement
© 2010 James M. Andre

More photos of Glossopetalon pungens in CalPhotos

Geographic subdivisions for Glossopetalon pungens:
e DMtns (Clark Mtn Range)
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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).