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Vascular Plants of California
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Hoffmannseggia microphylla

Higher Taxonomy
Family: Fabaceae (Leguminosae)View DescriptionDichotomous Key
Habit: Annual to tree. Leaf: generally alternate, generally compound, generally stipuled, generally entire, pinnately veined Inflorescence: generally raceme, spike, umbel or head; or flowers 1--few in axils. Flower: generally bisexual, generally bilateral; hypanthium 0 or flat to tubular; sepals generally 5, generally fused; petals generally 5, free, fused, or lower 2 +- united into keel (see 3, Key to Groups, for banner, wings); stamens 10 or many (or [1], 5, 6, 7, 9), free or fused or 10 with 9 filaments at least partly fused, 1 (uppermost) free; pistil 1, ovary superior, generally 1-chambered, ovules 1--many, style, stigma 1. Fruit: legume, including a stalk-like base (above receptacle) or not. Seed: 1--many, often +- reniform, generally hard, smooth.
Genera In Family: +- 730 genera, 19400 species: worldwide; with grasses, requisite in agriculture, most natural ecosystems. Many cultivated, most importantly Arachis, peanut; Glycine, soybean; Phaseolus, beans; Medicago, alfalfa; Trifolium, clovers; many orns. Note: Unless stated otherwise, fruit length including stalk-like base, number of 2° leaflets is per 1° leaflet. Upper suture of fruit adaxial, lower abaxial. Anthyllis vulneraria L. evidently a waif, a contaminant of legume seed from Europe. Laburnum anagyroides Medik., collected on Mount St. Helena in 1987, may be naturalized. Ceratonia siliqua L., carob tree (Group 2), differs from Gleditsia triacanthos L. in having evergreen (vs deciduous) leaves that are 1-pinnate (vs 1-pinnate on spurs on old stems, 2-pinnate on new stems) with 2--5(8) (vs 7--17) 1° leaflets, commonly cultivated, now naturalized in southern California. Aeschynomene rudis Benth. , Halimodendron halodendron (Pall.) Voss (possibly extirpated), Lens culinaris Medik. are agricultural weeds. Caragana arborescens Lam. only cult. Ononis alopecuroides L. , Sphaerophysa salsula (Pall.) DC. all evidently extirpated. Cercidium moved to Parkinsonia; Chamaecytisus to Cytisus; Psoralidium lanceolatum to Ladeania.
eFlora Treatment Author: Martin F. Wojciechowski, except as noted
Scientific Editor: Martin F. Wojciechowski, Thomas J. Rosatti.
Genus: HoffmannseggiaView DescriptionDichotomous Key

Habit: Perennial herb, [subshrub], shrub. Leaf: 2-pinnate, leaf odd-pinnate, 1° leaflets even-pinnate. Inflorescence: lateral or terminal. Flower: +- bilateral; sepals +- free, equal; petals +- equal, yellow to orange-red; stamens 10, exserted, free, filaments often glandular. Fruit: dehiscent or not. Seed: several.
Species In Genus: 21 species: southern United States, Mexico, also Peru to Argentina. Etymology: (J. Centurius, Count of Hoffmannsegg, Germany, 1766--1849)
eFlora Treatment Author: Beryl B. Simpson
Reference: Simpson 1999 Lundellia 2:14--54
Unabridged Reference: Isely 1975 Mem New York Bot Gard 25:162--168
Hoffmannseggia microphylla Torr.
Habit: Plant erect, < 2.5 m; taproot woody. Leaf: 2--5 cm; 2° leaflets 3--7, 1.5--3.5 mm. Inflorescence: 9--16 cm, strigose. Flower: petals spreading, 6--12 mm wide, yellow, banner with red markings. Fruit: 18--23 mm, sickle-shaped.
Ecology: Common in sandy soils; Elevation: < 1000 m. Bioregional Distribution: s SNE, DSon; Distribution Outside California: Arizona, Mexico. Flowering Time: Apr
Synonyms: Caesalpinia virgata Fisher
Jepson eFlora Author: Beryl B. Simpson
Reference: Simpson 1999 Lundellia 2:14--54
Index of California Plant Names (ICPN; linked via the Jepson Online Interchange)

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Botanical illustration including Hoffmannseggia microphylla

botanical illustration including Hoffmannseggia microphylla


Citation for this treatment: Beryl B. Simpson 2012, Hoffmannseggia microphylla, in Jepson Flora Project (eds.) Jepson eFlora,, accessed on June 29, 2022.

Citation for the whole project: Jepson Flora Project (eds.) 2022, Jepson eFlora,, accessed on June 29, 2022.

Hoffmannseggia microphylla
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© 2011 James M. Andre
Hoffmannseggia microphylla
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© 2015 Keir Morse
Hoffmannseggia microphylla
click for enlargement
© 2015 Keir Morse
Hoffmannseggia microphylla
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© 2010 Neal Kramer
Hoffmannseggia microphylla
click for enlargement
© 2015 Keir Morse
Hoffmannseggia microphylla
click for enlargement
© 2015 Keir Morse

More photos of Hoffmannseggia microphylla in CalPhotos

Geographic subdivisions for Hoffmannseggia microphylla:
s SNE, DSon
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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).