Jepson eFlora: Taxon page
Vascular Plants of California
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Nothoscordum gracile

Higher Taxonomy
Family: AlliaceaeView DescriptionDichotomous Key
Habit: Perennial herb; bulb 1 or on rhizomes, reforming each year; bulblets at bulb bases or on rhizomes; outer bulb coat brown, red-brown, yellow-brown, or gray; inner coats generally white (pink, red, or yellow); onion odor, taste present (except Nothoscordum). Stem: scapose, cylindric, sometimes flat or triangular. Leaf: basal, sheathing stem, linear [or not], cylindric, channeled or flat, generally +- withering from tip by flowering. Inflorescence: umbel (1-flowered in Ipheion), bracts generally 2, splitting and appearing 2+ or not, +- fused, enclosing flower buds, scarious. Flower: perianth parts 6 in 2 petal-like whorls, +- free to fused in lower 1/3--1/2; stamens 6, fused to perianth, filaments widened at base, anthers attached at middle; ovary superior, 3-lobed, chambers 3, ovules 2+ per chamber, style 1, stigma entire or +- 3-lobed. Fruit: capsule, loculicidal. Seed: black, sculpture net-like, smooth, or granular.
Genera In Family: 13 genera, 750--800 species: worldwide. Note: Many cultivated for food, ornamental.
eFlora Treatment Author: Dale W. McNeal
Scientific Editor: Thomas J. Rosatti.
Genus: NothoscordumView Description 

Habit: Perennial herb; bulb with basal bulblets or not; outer coat membranous, brown; onion odor absent. Stem: scapose, cylindric. Leaf: basal, linear, flat or channeled, withering from tip before flower; bases sheathing. Inflorescence: umbel, flowers several; bracts obvious, generally 2, +- fused, scarious. Flower: perianth parts fused in lower 1/3, petal-like, lobes +- spreading; stigma head-like. Fruit: capsule, loculicidal. Seed: several(to 12), angled or flat, black.
Etymology: (Greek: false garlic)
eFlora Treatment Author: Dale W. McNeal
Reference: Jacobsen & McNeal 2002 FNANM 26:276--278
Nothoscordum gracile (Aiton) Stearn
Habit: Bulb +- 1.5 cm. Stem: 20--40 cm. Leaf: 2--several, 25--30 cm, 4--10 mm wide. Inflorescence: < 4 cm diam; bracts < umbel, persistent; pedicels erect to spreading, unequal. Flower: 8--14 mm; perianth white with +- green bases, +- red midveins, lobes oblanceolate, obtuse; stamens included; style persistent in fruit. Fruit: 6--7 mm, obovoid.
Ecology: Disturbed areas; Elevation: < 100 m. Bioregional Distribution: GV, CW, SCo; Distribution Outside California: native to South America. Flowering Time: Apr--Jun
Synonyms: Nothoscordum inodorum (Aiton) G. Nicholson, misappl.
Unabridged Note: Nothoscordum borbonicum Kunth may be correct name for this taxon, with Nothoscordum gracile misapplied to California pls, or it may have been misapplied to California plants for which the correct name is instead Nothoscordum gracile (Aiton) Stearn; more study needed. Nothoscordum inodorum (Aiton) G. Nicholson to be regarded as having been misapplied to plants in California flora; both it and its basionym are synonyms of Allium neapolitanum Cirillo.
Jepson eFlora Author: Dale W. McNeal
Reference: Jacobsen & McNeal 2002 FNANM 26:276--278
Index of California Plant Names (ICPN; linked via the Jepson Online Interchange)
Noxious Weed listed on the CDFA Weed Pest Ratings table
View the CDFA Pest Rating page for Nothoscordum gracile
Weed listed by Cal-IPC

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Citation for this treatment: Dale W. McNeal 2012, Nothoscordum gracile, in Jepson Flora Project (eds.) Jepson eFlora,, accessed on April 14, 2024.

Citation for the whole project: Jepson Flora Project (eds.) 2024, Jepson eFlora,, accessed on April 14, 2024.

No expert verified images found for Nothoscordum gracile.

Geographic subdivisions for Nothoscordum gracile:
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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.
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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).