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Vascular Plants of California
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Psorothamnus arborescens var. minutifolius

Higher Taxonomy
Family: Fabaceae (Leguminosae)View DescriptionDichotomous Key
Habit: Annual to tree. Leaf: generally alternate, generally compound, generally stipuled, generally entire, pinnately veined Inflorescence: generally raceme, spike, umbel or head; or flowers 1--few in axils. Flower: generally bisexual, generally bilateral; hypanthium 0 or flat to tubular; sepals generally 5, generally fused; petals generally 5, free, fused, or lower 2 +- united into keel (see 3, Key to Groups, for banner, wings); stamens 10 or many (or [1], 5, 6, 7, 9), free or fused or 10 with 9 filaments at least partly fused, 1 (uppermost) free; pistil 1, ovary superior, generally 1-chambered, ovules 1--many, style, stigma 1. Fruit: legume, including a stalk-like base (above receptacle) or not. Seed: 1--many, often +- reniform, generally hard, smooth.
Genera In Family: +- 730 genera, 19400 species: worldwide; with grasses, requisite in agriculture, most natural ecosystems. Many cultivated, most importantly Arachis, peanut; Glycine, soybean; Phaseolus, beans; Medicago, alfalfa; Trifolium, clovers; many orns. Note: Unless stated otherwise, fruit length including stalk-like base, number of 2° leaflets is per 1° leaflet. Upper suture of fruit adaxial, lower abaxial. Anthyllis vulneraria L. evidently a waif, a contaminant of legume seed from Europe. Laburnum anagyroides Medik., collected on Mount St. Helena in 1987, may be naturalized. Ceratonia siliqua L., carob tree (Group 2), differs from Gleditsia triacanthos L. in having evergreen (vs deciduous) leaves that are 1-pinnate (vs 1-pinnate on spurs on old stems, 2-pinnate on new stems) with 2--5(8) (vs 7--17) 1° leaflets, commonly cultivated, now naturalized in southern California. Aeschynomene rudis Benth. , Halimodendron halodendron (Pall.) Voss (possibly extirpated), Lens culinaris Medik. are agricultural weeds. Caragana arborescens Lam. only cult. Ononis alopecuroides L. , Sphaerophysa salsula (Pall.) DC. all evidently extirpated. Cercidium moved to Parkinsonia; Chamaecytisus to Cytisus; Psoralidium lanceolatum to Ladeania.
eFlora Treatment Author: Martin F. Wojciechowski, except as noted
Scientific Editor: Martin F. Wojciechowski, Thomas J. Rosatti.
Genus: PsorothamnusView DescriptionDichotomous Key

Common Name: INDIGO-BUSH
Habit: Perennial herb to small tree, generally thorny, gland-dotted, especially stems, generally hairy. Stem: generally intricately branched. Leaf: simple or generally odd-1-pinnate, leaflets 1--3, generally more. Inflorescence: axillary or terminal, raceme, spike- or head-like or not; pedicel bractlets (0)2. Flower: calyx lobes generally unequal, upper 2 often largest; petals from receptacle, indigo blue to pink-purple; stamens 10, filaments partly fused; ovules generally 2. Fruit: indehiscent, included in or exserted from calyx, generally glandular. Seed: 1.
Etymology: (Greek: scabshrub)
eFlora Treatment Author: Martin F. Wojciechowski & Duane Isely
Unabridged Reference: Barneby 1977 Mem New York Bot Gard 27:21--54, 598--607
Species: Psorothamnus arborescensView Description 

Habit: Shrub < 1 m, armed or not, glabrous to +- puberulent. Leaf: leaflets generally 5--7, 3--14 mm, terminal (occasionally all) often continuous with axis. Inflorescence: raceme, open; pedicel bractlets 2. Flower: calyx lobes +- equal, generally < tube; corolla 6--10 mm, indigo-blue to violet-purple, glands 0. Fruit: exserted, 7--10 mm, ovoid-ellipsoid, hairs 0 to fine, glands few to several, scattered, large, +- yellow.
Note: Possibly best united with Psorothamnus fremontii; varieties similar morphologically, distinct geographically.
Psorothamnus arborescens (A. Gray) Barneby var. minutifolius (Parish) Barneby
Leaf: leaflets lanceolate to ovate, larger 2.5 mm or more wide, generally jointed to axis, glabrous to loosely hairy. Flower: calyx 5--7 mm, hairs 0 or sparse.
Ecology: Desert mountain slopes, canyons, talus; Elevation: 150--1900 m. Bioregional Distribution: c&s SNE, n&c DMoj; Distribution Outside California: southwestern Nevada. Flowering Time: Generally May--Oct
Synonyms: Dalea fremontii Torr. ex A. Gray var. minutifolia (Parish) Benson
Jepson eFlora Author: Martin F. Wojciechowski & Duane Isely
Index of California Plant Names (ICPN; linked via the Jepson Online Interchange)

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Botanical illustration including Psorothamnus arborescens var. minutifolius

botanical illustration including Psorothamnus arborescens var. minutifolius

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Citation for this treatment: Martin F. Wojciechowski & Duane Isely 2012, Psorothamnus arborescens var. minutifolius, in Jepson Flora Project (eds.) Jepson eFlora,, accessed on June 15, 2024.

Citation for the whole project: Jepson Flora Project (eds.) 2024, Jepson eFlora,, accessed on June 15, 2024.

Psorothamnus arborescens  
var. minutifolius
click for enlargement
©2012 Neal Kramer
Psorothamnus arborescens  
var. minutifolius
click for enlargement
©1999 Larry Blakely
Psorothamnus arborescens  
var. minutifolius
click for enlargement
©2011 Steve Matson
Psorothamnus arborescens  
var. minutifolius
click for enlargement
©2004 James M. Andre
Psorothamnus arborescens  
var. minutifolius
click for enlargement
©2009 Aaron Schusteff

More photos of Psorothamnus arborescens var. minutifolius
in CalPhotos

Geographic subdivisions for Psorothamnus arborescens var. minutifolius:
c&s SNE, n&c DMoj
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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.
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).