Atriplex saccaria

S. Watson

Proc. Amer. Acad. Arts 9: 112. 1874.

Common names: Stalked orach
Synonyms: Atriplex truncata var. saccaria (S. Watson) M. E. Jones Obione saccaria (S. Watson) Ulbrich
Treatment appears in FNA Volume 4. Mentioned on page 348.

Herbs, erect, forming rounded clumps. Stems mainly 0.5–4(–5) dm; stems usually branched from base, terete, stout, angled; herbage scurfy. Leaves alternate or proximalmost subopposite, short petiolate or distal ones sessile; petiole 2–5 mm; blade cordate-ovate or subreniform to ovate to deltoid-ovate or oval, mainly 6–40 × 4–30 mm, base truncate to subcordate or broadly cuneate, margin entire or in some subhastately lobed or sometimes undulate-dentate, apex acute to rounded. Staminate glomerules in distal axils or in short, naked, terminal (early deciduous) panicles; flowers with 5-parted calyx. Pistillate flowers usually in fascicles of 1–3 in proximal axils. Fruiting bracteoles monomorphic or dimorphic, larger ones on stipes (2–)4–8(–15) mm, others sessile, united at base, round-triangular or suborbicular, 4–6 mm, irregularly and coarsely dentate and with ± densely beset with flat, cristate, or hornlike appendages, smaller bracteoles (lacking or rare in var. asterocarpa) in same axils, oblong to cuneate, 3–4 mm, apex truncate, dentate only at summit, faces smooth. Seeds brownish to whitish, 1.5–2.3 mm. 2n = 18.


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Ariz., Colo., N.Mex., Utah, Wyo.


Varieties 3 (3 in the flora).

Selected References



1 Leaves mainly ovate to cordate in profile, the distalmost bracteate ones (and sometimes all) often broadly so in age; fruiting bracteoles with stipes to 10 mm, but seldom exceeding 6 mm; Arizona, New Mexico, Wyoming, s to Texas Atriplex saccaria var. saccaria
1 Leaves oval to rhombic, the bases truncate to cuneate-attenuate; fruiting bracteoles with stipes of various length; sw Utah and adjacent states > 2
2 Leaves oval to suborbiculate or less commonly elliptic; fruiting bracteoles with hornlike appendages, borne on stipes mainly 2-6 mm Atriplex saccaria var. asterocarpa
2 Leaves rhombic to oval or triangular, base cuneate-attenuate; fruiting bracteoles with flattened processes, borne on stipes mainly 2-15 mm (sessile in some) Atriplex saccaria var. cornuta