Lycium californicum Nutt. ex A. Gray  
Family: Solanaceae
California desert-thorn,  more...
Lycium californicum image
L. R. Landrum  
PLANT: Shrub, usually no more than 0.5 m tall in ours, intricately branched, decumbent or spreading, the branchlets usually tipped with short blunt thorns, otherwise unarmed. LEAVES: glabrous, fleshy, subterete, ovoid or spatuloid, 2-25 mm long, 1-3 mm wide, 2-8 in a fascicle, subsessile. FLOWERS: 1-3 in the axils, on pedicels 1-5 mm long (Fig. 2F); calyx campanulate, 2-2.5 mm long, 2-4-1obed, the lobes about 1/3 the length of the tube, broadly triangular, puberulent, usually ciliolate, or calyx laterally compressed, with 2 well-developed keeled lobes and 2 obsolete ones; calyx not keeled, with 4 subequal lobes, much shorter than length of the tube; corolla white to pale purple, the tube 2-4.5 mm long, the lobes 4, oblong-ovate, about as long as the tube or slightly shorter than it, spreading or reflexed, sparsely ciliolate; stamens 4, exserted; filaments adnate a little above the middle of the corolla-tube, the base of the free portion and adjacent corolla-tube densely hairy; style usually surpassing the stamens. FRUITS: ovoid, 2-4 mm long, orange-red or red, with thin succulent exocarps, endocarps much hardened, the carpels separating rather readily at maturity, each carpel 1-seeded. N = 12, 18, 24. NOTES: Low sparse desert with apparently poor drainage and hard saline soils, often associated with L. fremontii and Atriplex polycarpa (Fig. 3A): Maricopa, Pima, Pinal cos. (Fig. 1C); 350-450 m (1200-1500 ft); Jan-Mar; CA; n Mex. A species of four varieties; in AZ only L. c. var. arizonicum A. Gray is found, which differs from other varieties in its extremely fleshy globular to pyriform leaves and uncompressed calyx with subequal calyx-lobes. REFERENCES: Windham, M.D. And G. Yatskievych. 2009. Vascular Plants of Arizona: Iso√ętaceae. CANOTIA 5 (1): 27-29, 2009.
Common Name: California desert-thorn Duration: Perennial Nativity: Native Lifeform: Shrub Synonyms: Lycium californicum var. arizonicum
Lycium californicum image
L. R. Landrum  
Lycium californicum image
Lycium californicum image
Lycium californicum image
Lycium californicum image
Lycium californicum image
Lycium californicum image
Lycium californicum image
Lycium californicum image
Lycium californicum image
Lycium californicum image
Lycium californicum image
Lycium californicum image
Lycium californicum image
Lycium californicum image