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Vascular Plants of California
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Poterium sanguisorba

Higher Taxonomy
Family: RosaceaeView DescriptionDichotomous Key
Common Name: ROSE FAMILY
Habit: Annual to tree, glandular or not. Leaf: simple to palmately or pinnately compound, generally alternate; stipules free to fused (0), persistent to deciduous. Inflorescence: cyme, raceme, panicle, cluster, or flowers 1; bractlets on pedicel ("pedicel bractlets") generally 0--3(many), subtended by bract or generally not. Flower: generally bisexual, radial; hypanthium free or fused to ovary, saucer- to funnel-shaped, subtending bractlets ("hypanthium bractlets") 0--5, alternate sepals; sepals generally 5; petals generally 5, free; stamens (0,1)5--many, anther pollen sacs generally 2; pistils (0)1--many, simple or compound, ovary superior to inferior, styles 1--5. Fruit: 1--many per flower, achene (fleshy-coated or not), follicle, drupe, or pome with generally papery core, occasionally drupe-like with 1--5 stones. Seed: generally 1--5 (per fruit, not per flower).
Genera In Family: 110 genera, +- 3000 species: worldwide, especially temperate; many cultivated for ornamental, fruit, especially Cotoneaster, Fragaria, Malus, Prunus, Pyracantha, Rosa, Rubus. Note: Number of teeth is per leaf or leaflet, not per side of leaf or leaflet, except in Drymocallis.
eFlora Treatment Author: Daniel Potter & Barbara Ertter, family description, key to genera, treatment of genera by Daniel Potter, except as noted
Scientific Editor: Daniel Potter, Thomas J. Rosatti.
Genus: PoteriumView Description 

Habit: Perennial herb, nonglandular. Leaf: alternate, odd-1-pinnately compound; leaflets toothed < 1/3 to midvein. Inflorescence: spike, head-like; pedicel bractlets 2, subtended by 1 bract. Flower: bisexual or pistillate; hypanthium urn-shaped, bractlets 0; sepals generally 4; petals 0; stamens [0]many; pistils (1)2(3), ovaries superior, continuous to style at top, stigma generally +- bushy, exserted. Fruit: hypanthium hard, 4-angled, enclosing achene(s). Chromosomes: 2n=28,56.
Species In Genus: 13 species: Europe, Asia. Etymology: (Greek: goblet or beaker)
eFlora Treatment Author: Daniel Potter & Barbara Ertter
Unabridged Reference: Kerr 2004 A phylogenetic and biogeographic analysis of Sanguisorbeae (Rosaceae), with emphasis on the Pleistocene radiation of the high Andean genus Polylepis. Ph.D. Dissertation Univ of Maryland.
Poterium sanguisorba L.
Habit: Tufted, taprooted. Stem: erect, generally 20--70 cm. Leaf: basal present at flower, largest generally 4--20 cm; leaflets 4--10 per side, largest blade generally 5--20 mm, round-oblong, stalk generally 1--4 mm, teeth generally < 15. Inflorescence: 7--30 mm, 6--20 mm wide, ovoid-spheric, 5--30-flowered; peduncle 5--15 cm; bract, pedicel bractlets +- 2 mm wide. Flower: sepals 3--6 mm, elliptic, green or +- purple; filaments thread-like. Fruit: +- 5 mm; angles short-winged; faces with raised bumpy network.
Ecology: Open, especially disturbed areas; Elevation: 22--1830 m. Bioregional Distribution: CA-FP (exc SNH); Distribution Outside California: to eastern United States; native to Europe. Flowering Time: Mar--Jul Note: Often used in seeding mixtures after fires and in pastures.
Synonyms: Sanguisorba minor Scop.; Sanguisorba minor subsp. muricata (Bonnier & Layens) Briq.
Jepson eFlora Author: Daniel Potter & Barbara Ertter
Index of California Plant Names (ICPN; linked via the Jepson Online Interchange)

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Botanical illustration including Poterium sanguisorba

botanical illustration including Poterium sanguisorba


Citation for this treatment: Daniel Potter & Barbara Ertter 2012, Poterium sanguisorba, in Jepson Flora Project (eds.) Jepson eFlora,, accessed on January 16, 2021.

Citation for the whole project: Jepson Flora Project (eds.) 2021, Jepson eFlora,, accessed on January 16, 2021.

Poterium sanguisorba
click for enlargement
© 2010 Barry Breckling
Poterium sanguisorba
click for enlargement
© 2011 Barry Breckling
Poterium sanguisorba
click for enlargement
© 2011 Barry Breckling
Poterium sanguisorba
click for enlargement
© 2010 Barry Breckling

More photos of Poterium sanguisorba in CalPhotos

Geographic subdivisions for Poterium sanguisorba:
CA-FP (exc SNH)
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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).