Jepson eFlora: Taxon page
Vascular Plants of California
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Malus pumila

Higher Taxonomy
Family: RosaceaeView DescriptionDichotomous Key
Common Name: ROSE FAMILY
Habit: Annual to tree, glandular or not. Leaf: simple to palmately or pinnately compound, generally alternate; stipules free to fused (0), persistent to deciduous. Inflorescence: cyme, raceme, panicle, cluster, or flowers 1; bractlets on pedicel ("pedicel bractlets") generally 0--3(many), subtended by bract or generally not. Flower: generally bisexual, radial; hypanthium free or fused to ovary, saucer- to funnel-shaped, subtending bractlets ("hypanthium bractlets") 0--5, alternate sepals; sepals generally 5; petals generally 5, free; stamens (0,1)5--many, anther pollen sacs generally 2; pistils (0)1--many, simple or compound, ovary superior to inferior, styles 1--5. Fruit: 1--many per flower, achene (fleshy-coated or not), follicle, drupe, or pome with generally papery core, occasionally drupe-like with 1--5 stones. Seed: generally 1--5 (per fruit, not per flower).
Genera In Family: 110 genera, +- 3000 species: worldwide, especially temperate; many cultivated for ornamental, fruit, especially Cotoneaster, Fragaria, Malus, Prunus, Pyracantha, Rosa, Rubus. Note: Number of teeth is per leaf or leaflet, not per side of leaf or leaflet, except in Drymocallis.
eFlora Treatment Author: Daniel Potter & Barbara Ertter, family description, key to genera, treatment of genera by Daniel Potter, except as noted
Scientific Editor: Daniel Potter, Thomas J. Rosatti.
Genus: MalusView DescriptionDichotomous Key

Habit: Shrub to tree, thorny or not. Leaf: simple, generally toothed (lobed). Inflorescence: few-flowered, +- umbel-like cluster; pedicel bractlets 0 or 1, deciduous. Flower: hypanthium bractlets 0; stamens many; ovary inferior, chambers (2)5, 2-ovuled, styles (2)5, +- fused at base. Fruit: pome, +- spheric, flesh not gritty.
Species In Genus: 25--50 species: northern temperate. Etymology: (Classical name of apple)
eFlora Treatment Author: Daniel Potter & Thomas J. Rosatti
Malus pumila Mill.
Habit: Tree. Leaf: 5--11 cm, elliptic to widely ovate; petiole 10--40 mm. Flower: petals white or pink. Fruit: pedicel 10--25 mm. Chromosomes: 2n=34,51.
Ecology: Disturbed places; Elevation: < 2080 m. Bioregional Distribution: CA-FP; Distribution Outside California: native to Eurasia. Flowering Time: Apr--May
Synonyms: Malus domestica Borkh.; Malus pumila var. domestica (Borkh.) C.K. Schneid.; Malus sylvestris Mill., misappl.; Pyrus malus L.
Unabridged Note: TROPICOS & IPNI label Malus domestica Borkh. (Theoretisches-praktisches Handbuch der Forstbotanik und Forsttechnologie 2: 1272--1276. 1803) as illegitimate, superfluous for M. communis Desf. The work isn't readily available at UCB so has not been checked. If Malus domestica is in fact illegitimate, then the correct citation would be Malus pumila Mill. var. domestica C.K. Schneid. A proposal to conserve the name Malus domestica against Malus pumila, Malus communis, Malus frutescens, and Pyrus dioica has been published in Taxon 59(2):650--652 (April, 2010).
Jepson eFlora Author: Daniel Potter & Thomas J. Rosatti
Index of California Plant Names (ICPN; linked via the Jepson Online Interchange)

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Citation for this treatment: Daniel Potter & Thomas J. Rosatti 2012, Malus pumila, in Jepson Flora Project (eds.) Jepson eFlora, /eflora/eflora_display.php?tid=32587, accessed on August 04, 2020.

Citation for the whole project: Jepson Flora Project (eds.) 2020, Jepson eFlora,, accessed on August 04, 2020.

Malus pumila
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© 2011 California Academy of Sciences
Malus pumila
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© 2014 California Academy of Sciences
Malus pumila
click for enlargement
© 2011 California Academy of Sciences
Malus pumila
click for enlargement
© 2011 California Academy of Sciences
Malus pumila
click for enlargement
© 2011 California Academy of Sciences
Malus pumila
click for enlargement
© 2011 California Academy of Sciences

More photos of Malus pumila in CalPhotos

Geographic subdivisions for Malus pumila:
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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.
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).