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Amsinckia tessellata var. tessellata


Higher Taxonomy
Family: BoraginaceaeView DescriptionDichotomous Key
Habit: Annual, perennial herb, or shrub, often bristly or sharp-hairy. Stem: prostrate-decumbent to erect. Leaf: basal and/or cauline, simple, generally alternate, sometimes opposite, especially at base. Inflorescence: cymes, arranged singly or in groups of 2--5, generally coiled in flower, generally elongating in fruit. Flower: bisexual, generally radial; sepals 5, free or fused at least at base; corolla 5-lobed, salverform, funnel-shaped, rotate, or bell-shaped, appendages (often called "fornices") 0 or 5 at top of tube, when present often differentially pigmented, alternate stamens; stamens epipetalous; ovary superior, 4-lobed, style 1, entire or minutely 2-lobed (2-branched). Fruit: nutlets 1--4, when > 1, all similar (often called "homomorphic") or 1 or 2 dissimilar in size and/or shape from the others (often called "heteromorphic"), free (fused), smooth to roughened, prickly or bristly or not.
Genera In Family: +- 90 genera, +- 1600--1700 species: mostly temperate, especially western North America, Mediterranean; some cultivated (Borago, Echium, Myosotis, Symphytum). Toxicity: Many genera may be TOXIC from pyrrolizidine alkaloids or accumulated nitrates. Note: Sometimes still treated in broader sense of TJM2 (e.g., APG IV 2016 Bot J Linn Soc 181:1--20), but recent evidence (Luebert et al. 2016) supports segregation, for our flora, of the families Ehretiaceae, Heliotropiaceae, Hydrophyllaceae, Lennoaceae, and Namaceae.
eFlora Treatment Author: Michael G. Simpson, C. Matt Guilliams, Kristen Hasenstab-Lehman & Ronald B. Kelley
Scientific Editor: Bruce G. Baldwin, C. Matt Guilliams, Kristen Hasenstab-Lehman, David J. Keil, Ronald B. Kelley, Robert W. Patterson, Thomas J. Rosatti & Michael G. Simpson
Genus: AmsinckiaView DescriptionDichotomous Key

Habit: Annual; hairs generally bristly, often bulbous-based. Stem: generally erect, 2--12 dm, generally green. Leaf: basal and cauline, alternate, sessile or lower short-petioled, generally linear to narrow-lanceolate or -oblong, generally not succulent, +- entire. Inflorescence: spike-like cymes, generally +- terminal, tip coiled. Flower: generally radial; calyx lobes 5 or 2--4 (see key); corolla tube generally not constricted, generally orange or yellow (red-orange), appendages generally 0, throat generally open, glabrous, limb on large-flowered taxa generally with 5 dark spots. Fruit: nutlets erect, +- triangular, adaxially generally with exposed elliptic attachment scar, generally with rounded or sharp tubercles.
Etymology: (W. Amsinck, patron of Hamburg Botanic Garden, 1752--1831) Note: Self-compatible; often heterostylous; large-flowered taxa generally cross-pollinated, small-flowered self-pollinated.
eFlora Treatment Author: Ronald B. Kelley & Fred R. Ganders
Unabridged Reference: Ray & Chisaki 1957 Amer J Bot 44:529--554; Suksdorf 1931 Werdenda 1:47--113; Kelley & Seiber 1992 Phytochemistry 31:2369--2387
Species: Amsinckia tessellataView Description 

Flower: calyx lobes unequal in width, reduced to 2--4 from fusion below middle, notched at tip; corolla 8--16 mm, yellow or orange, tube 20-veined near base, limb 2--10 mm diam. Fruit: 2.5--4 mm, gray, dull, cobblestone-like or round-tubercled, ridged or not. Chromosomes: 2n=24.
Note: Homostylous.
Amsinckia tessellata A. Gray var. tessellata
Flower: calyx generally +- white hairy; corolla 8--12 mm, limb 2--6 mm diam, yellow; anthers appressed to stigma.
Ecology: Rocky or sandy soils; Elevation: 50--2280 m. Bioregional Distribution: s SNF, Teh, SnJV, SnFrB, SCoR, TR (n slope), GB, D; Distribution Outside California: to Washington, Idaho, Utah, Arizona, Baja California, South America. Flowering Time: Feb--Jun
Synonyms: Amsinckia tessellata var. elegans (Suksd.) Hoover
Unabridged Note: Abundant most years forming dense colonies in DMoj. The problematic occurrence of the distinctive Amsinckia tessellata var. elegans in the Carrizo Plain and western Antelope Valley (western DMoj) areas may represent a hybrid entity +- combining the traits of both listed varieties. See Hoover (1970), see Vascular Plants SLO Co. for description and alternative viewpoint.
Jepson eFlora Author: Ronald B. Kelley & Fred R. Ganders
Index of California Plant Names (ICPN; linked via the Jepson Online Interchange)

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Next taxon: Amsinckia vernicosa

Botanical illustration including Amsinckia tessellata var. tessellatabotanical illustration including Amsinckia tessellata var. tessellata

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Citation for this treatment: Ronald B. Kelley & Fred R. Ganders 2012, Amsinckia tessellata var. tessellata, in Jepson Flora Project (eds.) Jepson eFlora,, accessed on July 23, 2024.

Citation for the whole project: Jepson Flora Project (eds.) 2024, Jepson eFlora,, accessed on July 23, 2024.

Amsinckia tessellata  
var. tessellata
click for image enlargement
©2012 Keir Morse
Amsinckia tessellata  
var. tessellata
click for image enlargement
©2012 Neal Kramer
Amsinckia tessellata  
var. tessellata
click for image enlargement
©2008 Keir Morse
Amsinckia tessellata  
var. tessellata
click for image enlargement
©2008 Steve Matson
Amsinckia tessellata  
var. tessellata
click for image enlargement
©2012 Keir Morse

More photos of Amsinckia tessellata var. tessellata
in CalPhotos

Geographic subdivisions for Amsinckia tessellata var. tessellata:
s SNF, Teh, SnJV, SnFrB, SCoR, TR (n slope), GB, 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 occurrence).


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 Flowering-Fruiting Monthly Counts

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).