Jepson eFlora: Taxon page
Vascular Plants of California
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Tricardia watsonii

Higher Taxonomy
Family: BoraginaceaeView DescriptionDichotomous Key
Habit: Annual to shrub or small tree, or non-green root parasite, often bristly or sharp-hairy. Stem: prostrate to erect. Leaf: basal and/or cauline, generally simple, generally alternate. Inflorescence: generally cymes, or panicle-, raceme-, head-, or spike-like, generally coiled in flower (often described as scorpioid), generally elongating in fruit, or flowers 1--2 per axil. Flower: bisexual, generally radial; sepals (4)5(10), fused at least at base, or free; corolla (4)5(10)-lobed, salverform, funnel-shaped, rotate, or bell-shaped, generally without scales at tube base, with 0 or 5 appendages at tube top, alternate stamens; stamens epipetalous; ovary generally superior, entire to 4-lobed, style 1(2), entire or 2-lobed or -branched. Fruit: valvate or circumscissile capsule or nutlets 1--4, free (fused), smooth to roughened, prickly or bristly or not.
Genera In Family: +- 120 genera, +- 2300 species: tropics, temperate, especially western North America, Mediterranean; some cultivated (Borago, Heliotropium, Echium, Myosotis, Nemophila, Phacelia, Symphytum, Wigandia). Toxicity: Many genera may be TOXIC from pyrrolizidine alkaloids or accumulated nitrates. Note: Recently treated to include Hydrophyllaceae, Lennoaceae. Wigandia urens added, as naturalized.
eFlora Treatment Author: Ronald B. Kelley, Robert Patterson, Richard R. Halse & Timothy C. Messick, family description, key to genera, treatment of genera by Ronald B. Kelley, except as noted
Scientific Editor: Ronald B. Kelley, Robert Patterson, Thomas J. Rosatti, Bruce G. Baldwin, David J. Keil.
Genus: TricardiaView Description 

Species In Genus: 1 sp. Etymology: (Greek: 3 hearts, from calyx)
eFlora Treatment Author: Robert Patterson & Richard R. Halse
Tricardia watsonii S. Watson
Habit: Perennial herb; herbage long-soft-hairy, in age +- glabrous; taproot woody, generally topped by a branched caudex covered by old petiole bases. Stem: several from root crown, erect, 5--40 cm. Leaf: generally in basal rosette, petioled, 2--9 cm, 5--25 mm wide; cauline alternate, lower short-petioled, upper sessile, 6--20 mm, 3--15 mm wide, entire. Inflorescence: open, terminal; flowers pedicelled. Flower: calyx lobes 5, unequal, not alike, enlarged in fruit, outer 3 cordate, 5--9 mm, 9--25 mm in fruit, scarious, veiny, green to +- purple, inner 2 +- 4 mm, linear; corolla 4--8 mm, bell-shaped to rotate, white to cream, generally marked lavender; stamens included, unequal, equally attached; ovary chamber appearing 1, style 1, 3--4 mm, tip 2-lobed. Fruit: capsule, 7--9 mm, glabrous. Seed: 4--8, oblong, brown, rough. Chromosomes: n=8.
Ecology: Sandy or gravelly desert slopes, flats, mtns, generally under shrubs; Elevation: 100--2300 m. Bioregional Distribution: SnBr, SNE, D; Distribution Outside California: to Utah, Arizona. Flowering Time: Apr--Jun
Jepson eFlora Author: Robert Patterson & Richard R. Halse
Index of California Plant Names (ICPN; linked via the Jepson Online Interchange)

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Botanical illustration including Tricardia watsonii

botanical illustration including Tricardia watsonii


Citation for this treatment: Robert Patterson & Richard R. Halse 2012, Tricardia watsonii, in Jepson Flora Project (eds.) Jepson eFlora, /eflora/eflora_display.php?tid=46923, accessed on May 31, 2020.

Citation for the whole project: Jepson Flora Project (eds.) 2020, Jepson eFlora,, accessed on May 31, 2020.

Tricardia watsonii
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© 2010 Aaron Schusteff
Tricardia watsonii
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© 2004 James M. Andre
Tricardia watsonii
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© 2004 James M. Andre
Tricardia watsonii
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© 2016 Steve Matson
Tricardia watsonii
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© 2009 Steve Matson
Tricardia watsonii
click for enlargement
© 2016 Steve Matson

More photos of Tricardia watsonii in CalPhotos

Geographic subdivisions for Tricardia watsonii:
SnBr, SNE, D
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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).