Jepson eFlora: Taxon page
Vascular Plants of California
Key to families | Table of families and genera
Previous taxon Index to accepted names and synonyms:
| A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I | J | K | L | M |
| N | O | P | Q | R | S | T | U | V | W | X | Y | Z |
Next taxon

Heliotropium curassavicum var. oculatum

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: HeliotropiumView DescriptionDichotomous Key

Habit: Annual, perennial herb [shrub], glabrous to bristly or strigose. Stem: prostrate to erect, branched. Leaf: generally cauline, petioled to sessile, generally entire. Inflorescence: flower 1 in axils or many in terminal coiled spike-like cymes. Flower: corolla rotate to bell-shaped, white to purple; stamens attached on upper tube, included, anthers +- sessile; style 0 or not lobed, stigma 1, linear to disk-like. Fruit: nutlets 2 or 4, erect, generally ovoid to spheric, smooth, roughened, or hairy, scar generally lateral.
Species In Genus: +- 250 species: temperate, tropics. Ornamental, cultivated for medicinal drugs. Etymology: (Greek: sun turning, from some species flowering at summer solstice)
eFlora Treatment Author: Ronald B. Kelley & Dieter H. Wilken
Unabridged Reference: Ewan 1942 Bull So Calif Acad Sci 41: 51--57
Heliotropium curassavicum L. var. oculatum (A. Heller) I.M. Johnst. ex Tidestr.
Habit: Perennial herb, fleshy, occasionally from rhizome-like root. Stem: prostrate to +- ascending, 1--6 dm, glabrous. Leaf: 1--6 cm, generally oblanceolate, short-petioled to subsessile, acute to obtuse, glabrous. Inflorescence: spike-like cymes 2--4. Flower: calyx lobes oblong to narrow-ovate, glabrous; corolla 3--5 mm, 3--5(7) mm diam, salverform to bell-shaped, white, throat generally blue-purple, upper tube +- yellow. Fruit: nutlets 4, smooth. Chromosomes: 2n=26, 28.
Ecology: Moist to dry, saline to alkaline soils, generally near water; Elevation: < 2250 m. Bioregional Distribution: CA (exc KR, NCoRH, c SNH); Distribution Outside California: southern Nevada, southwestern Utah, to western Texas, northern Mexico. Flowering Time: Feb--Oct
Synonyms: Heliotropium oculatum A. Heller; Heliotropium spathulatum subsp. oculatum (A. Heller) Ewan
Unabridged Note: Part of worldwide, highly polymorphic sp. complex with many ecological and/or geographical variants.
Jepson eFlora Author: Ronald B. Kelley & Dieter H. Wilken
Index of California Plant Names (ICPN; linked via the Jepson Online Interchange)

Previous taxon: Heliotropium convolvulaceum var. californicum
Next taxon: Heliotropium europaeum

Name Search

Botanical illustration including Heliotropium curassavicum var. oculatum

botanical illustration including Heliotropium curassavicum var. oculatum


Citation for this treatment: Ronald B. Kelley & Dieter H. Wilken 2012, Heliotropium curassavicum var. oculatum, in Jepson Flora Project (eds.) Jepson eFlora, /eflora/eflora_display.php?tid=59914, accessed on February 22, 2020.

Citation for the whole project: Jepson Flora Project (eds.) 2020, Jepson eFlora,, accessed on February 22, 2020.

Heliotropium curassavicum var. oculatum
click for enlargement
© 2019 Neal Kramer
Heliotropium curassavicum var. oculatum
click for enlargement
© 2015 Keir Morse
Heliotropium curassavicum var. oculatum
click for enlargement
© 2015 Keir Morse
Heliotropium curassavicum var. oculatum
click for enlargement
© 2015 Keir Morse
Heliotropium curassavicum var. oculatum
click for enlargement
© 2019 Neal Kramer
Heliotropium curassavicum var. oculatum
click for enlargement
© 2015 Keir Morse

More photos of Heliotropium curassavicum var. oculatum in CalPhotos

Geographic subdivisions for Heliotropium curassavicum var. oculatum:
CA (exc KR, NCoRH, c SNH)
1. You can change the display of the base map and layers by clicking on the layer control box in the upper right-hand corner.
2. California county polygons can be turned off and on in the layer control box.
3. Filling of Jepson subdivision polygons can be turned off and on in the layer control box.
4. Moving the cursor over any numbered cluster will show the range boundary of the included specimens (with a blue polygon).
5. Marker clustering can be turned off by clicking this link:      Marker Clustering OFF
WARNING: Turning this off might cause maps with large numbers of specimens to load slowly.
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).


View elevation by latitude chart

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).