Stanleya pinnata

(Pursh) Britton

Trans. New York Acad. Sci. 8: 62. 1889.

Basionym: Cleome pinnata Pursh Fl. Amer. Sept. 2: 739. 1813
Treatment appears in FNA Volume 7. Treatment on page 697. Mentioned on page 695, 696.

Perennials, subshrubs, or shrubs; (sometimes suffrutescent); (glaucous or not), mostly glabrous. Stems erect, unbranched or branched (few) proximally and distally, (1.2–)3–12(–15.3) dm. Basal leaves (withered by flowering); similar to cauline. Cauline leaves: petiole 0.7–6.2 cm; blade (fleshy), oblanceolate to broadly lanceolate or ovate in outline, or (distally) lobed or linear to narrowly lanceolate, 3–15 cm (smaller distally), margins lyrate-pinnatifid or runcinate, or (distal) pinnately lobed or entire. Racemes somewhat dense. Fruiting pedicels horizontal to divaricate, 3–11 mm. Flowers: sepals oblong-linear, 8–16 mm; petals yellow, oblanceolate to oblong, 8–20 × 2–3 mm, claw 4–10 mm, wider at base, densely pubescent inside; filaments 11–28 mm, pilose at base; anthers 3–5 mm; gynophore 7–28 mm. Fruits usually spreading to divaricate, rarely ascending, often strongly curved downward, not tortuous, (smooth), terete, 3–9 cm × 1.5–3 mm; ovules 10–38 per ovary; style 0.2–0.6 mm. Seeds (sometimes black), oblong, 2.5–4.5 × 1.2–2 mm.


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Ariz., Calif., Colo., Idaho, Kans., Mont., N.Dak., N.Mex., Nev., Oreg., S.Dak., Tex., Utah, Wyo.


Varieties 3 (3 in the flora).

The three varieties of Stanleya pinnata are reasonably well-defined and can be easily separated from each other. Their maintenance here at varietal rank is tentative; a genus-wide phylogenetic study is much needed to establish whether or not they merit recognition as distinct species.


1 Cauline leaf blades: margins (at least proximal ones) lyrate-pinnatifid to runcinate. Stanleya pinnata var. pinnata
1 Cauline leaf blades: margins usually entire, rarely proximalmost dentate > 2
2 Cauline leaf blades ovate to lanceolate; petals 11-16 mm, claws 6-9 mm; ovules 26-34 per ovary; gynophores pubescent basally; Colorado, Kansas, Nevada, Utah, Wyoming. Stanleya pinnata var. integrifolia
2 Cauline leaf blades linear-lanceolate; petals 8-9(-10) mm, claws 4-5 mm; ovules 10-20 per ovary; gynophores glabrous or nearly so; Texas. Stanleya pinnata var. texana