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Vascular Plants of California
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Camissoniopsis bistorta

Higher Taxonomy
Family: OnagraceaeView DescriptionDichotomous Key
Habit: Annual to perennial herb (to tree). Leaf: cauline or basal, alternate, opposite, or whorled, generally simple and toothed (to pinnately compound); stipules 0 or generally deciduous. Inflorescence: spike, raceme, panicle, or flowers 1 in axils; bracted. Flower: generally bisexual, generally radial, often opening at either dawn or dusk; hypanthium generally prolonged beyond ovary (measured from ovary tip to sepal base); sepals 4(2--7); petals 4(2--7, rarely 0), often fading darker; stamens 2 × or = sepals in number, anthers 2-chambered, opening lengthwise, pollen interconnected by threads; ovary inferior, chambers generally as many as sepals (sometimes becoming 1), placentas axile or parietal, ovules 1--many per chamber, style 1, stigma 4-lobed (or lobes as many as sepals), club-shaped, spheric, or hemispheric. Fruit: capsule, loculicidal (sometimes berry or indehiscent and nut-like). Seed: sometimes winged or hair-tufted.
Genera In Family: 22 genera, +- 657 species: worldwide, especially western North America; many cultivated (Clarkia, Epilobium, Fuchsia, Oenothera). Note: Gaura moved to Oenothera. Fuchsia magellanica Lam. naturalized in northern California.
eFlora Treatment Author: Warren L. Wagner & Peter C. Hoch, family description, key to genera, treatment of genera by Warren L. Wagner, except as noted
Scientific Editor: Robert W. Patterson, Bruce G. Baldwin.
Genus: CamissoniopsisView DescriptionDichotomous Key

Habit: Annual to subshrub, from taproot. Leaf: basal and cauline, alternate, simple, generally narrowly lanceolate or narrowly elliptic to ovate. Inflorescence: spike, nodding in bud, generally flower from basal-most to distal nodes. Flower: opening at dawn; sepals 4, reflexed singly or in fused pairs; petals 4, yellow, fading red, generally with 1+ red basal spots, with no ultraviolet pattern; stamens 8, longer opposite sepals, anthers attached at middle, pollen grains 3-angled except in polyploid taxa at 20×; ovary chambers 4, stigma +- spheric or hemispheric, exceeding anthers and cross-pollinated or +- = anthers and self-pollinated. Fruit: 4-angled at least when dry, generally proximally thick, contorted or curled 1--5 times, or straight, not swollen by seeds, sessile. Seed: in 1 row per chamber, narrowly obovoid, flattened, dull brown-black.
Etymology: (Greek: like Camissonia) Note: Polyploidy and self-pollination have predominated in evolution of genus. Incl in Camissonia in TJM (1993).
eFlora Treatment Author: Warren L. Wagner
Reference: Wagner et al. 2007 Syst Bot Monogr 83:1--240
Unabridged Reference: Raven 1969 Contr US Natl Herb 37:161--396
Camissoniopsis bistorta (Nutt. ex Torr. & A. Gray) W.L. Wagner & Hoch
Habit: Annual or short-lived perennial herb, rosetted; strigose or hairs spreading, in inflorescence short, erect. Stem: decumbent to +- ascending, 50--80 cm, peeling. Leaf: 12--120 mm, petioled or distal generally +- sessile; cauline generally lanceolate (linear), minutely dentate to +- entire. Flower: hypanthium 2--5(7.5) mm; sepals (2.3)5--8(11) mm; petals (4.2)7--15 mm, basal spots generally 1--2; stigma exceeding anthers. Fruit: 12--40 mm, 1.5--2.5 mm wide, +- 4-angled, generally straight or slightly wavy and twisted. Seed: 0.9--1 mm. Chromosomes: 2n=14.
Ecology: Sandy fields near coast or clay soils in grassland to openings in coastal-sage scrub or chaparral; Elevation: < 600 m. Bioregional Distribution: SW; Distribution Outside California: northern Baja California. Flowering Time: Mar--Jun Note: Cross-pollinated. Intergrades with Camissoniopsis cheiranthifolia subsp. suffruticosa.
Synonyms: Camissonia bistorta (Nutt. Ex Torr. & A. Gray) P.H. Raven; Oenothera bistorta Nutt. ex Torr. & A. Gray; Oenothera bistorta var. veitchiana Hook.; Oenothera heterophylla Spach
Jepson eFlora Author: Warren L. Wagner
Reference: Wagner et al. 2007 Syst Bot Monogr 83:1--240
Index of California Plant Names (ICPN; linked via the Jepson Online Interchange)

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Botanical illustration including Camissoniopsis bistorta

botanical illustration including Camissoniopsis bistorta


Citation for this treatment: Warren L. Wagner 2012, Camissoniopsis bistorta, in Jepson Flora Project (eds.) Jepson eFlora,, accessed on February 08, 2023.

Citation for the whole project: Jepson Flora Project (eds.) 2023, Jepson eFlora,, accessed on February 08, 2023.

Camissoniopsis bistorta
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© 2015 Neal Kramer
Camissoniopsis bistorta
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© 2008 Michael Charters
Camissoniopsis bistorta
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© 2009 Neal Kramer
Camissoniopsis bistorta
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© 2009 Neal Kramer
Camissoniopsis bistorta
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© 2009 Thomas Stoughton
Camissoniopsis bistorta
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© 2009 Gary A. Monroe

More photos of Camissoniopsis bistorta in CalPhotos

Geographic subdivisions for Camissoniopsis bistorta:
1. You can change the display of the base map layer control box in the upper right-hand corner.
2. County and Jepson Region polygons can be turned off and on using the check boxes.
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).