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Vascular Plants of California
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Oryza sativa

Higher Taxonomy
Family: Poaceae (Gramineae)View DescriptionDichotomous Key
Habit: Annual to woody perennial herb; roots generally fibrous. Stem: generally round, hollow; nodes swollen, solid. Leaf: alternate, 2-ranked, generally linear, parallel-veined; sheath generally open; ligule membranous or hairy, at blade base. Inflorescence: various (of generally many spikelets). Spikelet: glumes generally 2; florets (lemma, palea, flower) 1--many; lemma generally membranous, sometimes glume-like; palea generally +- transparent, +- enclosed by lemma. Flower: generally bisexual, minute; perianth vestigial; stamens generally 3; stigmas generally 2, generally plumose. Fruit: grain, sometimes achene- or utricle-like.
Genera In Family: 650--900 genera; +- 10550 species: worldwide; greatest economic importance of any family (wheat, rice, maize, millet, sorghum, sugar cane, forage crops, ornamental, weeds; thatching, weaving, building materials). Note: Generally wind-pollinated. Achnatherum, Ampelodesmos, Hesperostipa, Nassella, Piptatherum, Piptochaetium, Ptilagrostis moved to Stipa; Elytrigia, Leymus, Pascopyrum, Pseudoroegneria, Taeniatherum to Elymus; Hierochloe to Anthoxanthum; Lolium, Vulpia to Festuca; Lycurus to Muhlenbergia; Monanthochloe to Distichlis; Pleuraphis to Hilaria; Rhynchelytrum to Melinis. The following taxa (in genera not included here), recorded in California from historical collections or reported in literature, are extirpated, lacking vouchers, or not considered naturalized: Acrachne racemosa (Roth) Ohwi, Allolepis texana (Vasey) Soderstr. & H.F. Decker, Amphibromus nervosus (Hook. f.) Baill., Axonopus affinis Chase, Axonopus fissifolius (Raddi) Kuhlm., Coix lacryma-jobi L., Cutandia memphitica (Spreng.) K. Richt., Dinebra retroflexa (Vahl) Panz., Eremochloa ciliaris (L.) Merr., Eustachys distichophylla (Lag.) Nees, Gaudinia fragilis (L.) P. Beauv., Miscanthus sinensis Andersson, Neyraudia arundinacea (L.) Henrard, Phyllostachys aurea Rivière & C. Rivière, Phyllostachys bambusoides Siebold & Zuccarini, Rottboellia cochinchinensis (Lour.) Clayton, Schedonnardus paniculatus (Nutt.) Branner & Coville, Schizachyrium cirratum (Hack.) Wooton & Standl., Schizachyrium scoparium (Michx.) Nash, Themeda quadrivalvis (L.) Kuntze, Thysanolaena latifolia (Hornem.) Honda, Tribolium obliterum (Hemsl.) Renvoize, Zea mays L., Zizania palustris L. var. interior (Fassett) Dore, Zoysia japonica Steud. Paspalum pubiflorum E. Fourn., Paspalum quadrifarium Lam., are now reported for southern California (J Bot Res Inst Texas 4:761--770). See Glossary p. 30 for illustrations of general family characteristics.
eFlora Treatment Author: James P. Smith, Jr., except as noted
Scientific Editor: James P. Smith, Jr., J. Travis Columbus, Dieter H. Wilken.
Genus: OryzaView Description 

Common Name: RICE
Habit: Annual, perennial herb. Stem: generally 1, erect. Leaf: cauline; ligule membranous; blade flat to folded. Inflorescence: panicle-like. Spikelet: laterally compressed; glumes 2, reduced to 2-lobed cup at pedicel tip; florets 3, lower 2 reduced to glume-like sterile lemmas, uppermost bisexual; fertile lemma keeled, glabrous or stiff-hairy, tip short-beaked, awned or not; palea keeled, beaked, = lemma; stamens 6.
Species In Genus: +- 20 species: tropics worldwide. Etymology: (Greek: rice) Note: There are historical collections of red rice, Oryza rufipogon Griff. , from GV, but no evidence of its being naturalized.
eFlora Treatment Author: Dieter H. Wilken
Unabridged Reference: Barkworth & Terrell 2007 FNANM 24:37--41
Oryza sativa L.
Habit: Annual (perennial herb). Stem: 4--15(20) dm. Leaf: sheath generally glabrous; ligule 4--10 mm, acute; blade 15--35 cm, 3--11 mm wide, glabrous to minutely scabrous. Inflorescence: 10--50 cm; branches capillary, drooping. Spikelet: elliptic, 6--11 mm, 2--4 mm wide; glumes vestigial; sterile lemmas 1.5--3(10) mm, awns 0; fertile lemma 6--11 mm, 2--3 mm wide, 3-veined; fertile palea 1--2 mm wide. Chromosomes: 2n=24.
Ecology: Wet sites; Elevation: < 100 m. Bioregional Distribution: GV; Distribution Outside California: Texas to southeastern United States, Mediterranean; native to southeastern Asia. Flowering Time: Sep--Nov Note: Perhaps our most important food pl, it is also used to feed cattle, as a starch source, and is fermented to make beer and sake.
Unabridged Note: Historical waif in Santa Barbara Co., collected once in 1962, and Imperial Co., collected once in 1954.
Jepson eFlora Author: Dieter H. Wilken
Index of California Plant Names (ICPN; linked via the Jepson Online Interchange)

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Citation for this treatment: Dieter H. Wilken 2012, Oryza sativa, in Jepson Flora Project (eds.) Jepson eFlora, /eflora/eflora_display.php?tid=35533, accessed on April 05, 2020.

Citation for the whole project: Jepson Flora Project (eds.) 2020, Jepson eFlora,, accessed on April 05, 2020.

Oryza sativa
click for enlargement
© 2011 Steve Matson
Oryza sativa
click for enlargement
© 2011 Steve Matson
Oryza sativa
click for enlargement
© 2011 Steve Matson
Oryza sativa
click for enlargement
© 2011 Steve Matson
Oryza sativa
click for enlargement
© 2011 Steve Matson
Oryza sativa
click for enlargement
© 2011 Steve Matson

More photos of Oryza sativa in CalPhotos

Geographic subdivisions for Oryza sativa:
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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).