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FNA | Family List | FNA Vol. 12 | Euphorbiaceae

11. Tragia ramosa Torrey, Ann. Lyceum Nat. Hist. New York. 2: 245. 1827.
[F W]

Branched or desert or common noseburn Branched or desert or common noseburn

Tragia angustifolia Nuttall; T. nepetifolia Cavanilles var. angustifolia (Müller Arg.) Müller Arg.; T. nepetifolia var. ramosa (Torrey) Müller Arg.; T. ramosa var. latifolia (Müller Arg.) Pax & K. Hoffmann; T. stylaris Müller Arg.; T. stylaris var. angustifolia Müller Arg.; T. stylaris var. latifolia Müller Arg.

Subshrubs, 1.2–5 dm. Stems erect to trailing, dark green to light green, apex rarely flexuous. Leaves: petiole 2–20 mm; blade linear-lanceolate to narrowly ovate, 1–4 × 0.5–2 cm, base truncate to weakly cordate, margins serrate, apex acute. Inflorescences terminal (often appearing leaf opposed), glands few, sessile, staminate flowers 2–20 per raceme; staminate bracts 1.5–2 mm. Pedicels: staminate 0.7–2 mm, persistent base 0.4–1.5 mm; pistillate 2–2.5 mm in fruit. Staminate flowers: sepals 3–4, green, 1–2.2 mm; stamens 3–6(–10), filaments 0.3–1 mm. Pistillate flowers: sepals lanceolate, 0.8–2.5 mm; styles connate 1/3–1/2 length, long-exserted; stigmas smooth to undulate. Capsules 6–8 mm wide. Seeds dark brown, 2.5–3.5 mm. 2n = 44.

Flowering spring–fall; fruiting late spring–fall. Mesquite, desert scrub, pine-juniper, oak woodlands; 200–2800 m; Ariz., Ark., Calif., Colo., Kans., Mo., Nebr., Nev., N.Mex., Tex., Utah; Mexico (Baja California, Chihuahua, Coahuila, Nuevo León, Sonora, Tamaulipas).

Tragia ramosa is a variable species showing much environmental plasticity. Collections from the western United States and western Mexico have much broader leaves than those from Texas and Nuevo León, and were previously referred to as T. stylaris. Smooth stigmatic surfaces, three to six (rarely to ten) stamens, and narrow apical leaves are characters consistent with T. ramosa.


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