Overview

Distribution

National Distribution

United States

Origin: Exotic

Regularity: Regularly occurring

Currently: Unknown/Undetermined

Confidence: Confident

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introduced; Calif.; Mexico; introduced in Europe.
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Physical Description

Morphology

Description

Plants to 2.5 m. Leaves: petiole to 5 cm; blade lanceolate to ovate, to 13 × 6 cm, base obtuse, apex acute to acute-mucronate. Ra-cemes open, mostly axillary, to 25 cm; peduncle to 5.5 cm; pedicel 2-5 mm. Flowers: sepals 5(-8), greenish, oblong, strikingly unequal, largest ca. twice as wide as smallest, 3-4 × 1.5-2.2 mm; stamens 15-22, usually in 2 whorls; carpels 8-11, connate; ovary 8-11-loculed. Berries purple-black, 6-7 mm diam. Seeds black, lenticular, 2-2.5 mm, shiny.
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Ecology

Habitat

Disturbed ground; 10-60m.
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Life History and Behavior

Cyclicity

Flowering/Fruiting

Flowering summer-winter.
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Conservation

Conservation Status

National NatureServe Conservation Status

United States

Rounded National Status Rank: NNA - Not Applicable

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NatureServe Conservation Status

Rounded Global Status Rank: GNR - Not Yet Ranked

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Notes

Comments

Phytolacca heterotepala was first reported in the flora area by J. T. Howell (1960) on the basis of California (San Francisco) collections. Its current status in the flora is uncertain; J. C. Hickman (1993) recorded it as "probably not naturalized." The few specimens we have seen possess in greater-or-lesser degree those features cited by H. P. H. Walter (1909) in his description of this taxon. The sepals are strikingly unequal, the largest being up to twice as wide as the smallest, and the stamens appearing to be in two whorls. The status of the species itself is in need of further investigation.
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