Native Cerastium Species
by Doreen Smith
The Jepson Manual (2nd ed., 2012) offers a new treatment of the native species of Cerastium that grow near the coast in Marin.
Do we have Cerastium arvense ssp. strictum or Cerastium arvense ssp. maximum? The latter has now been put into the new taxon Cerastium viride.
According to the Consortium of California Herbaria records, Pt. Reyes has both species, each at a different end of the Peninsula, which to me seems to be unlikely.
The flowers from plants of Pt. Reyes, west of the San Andreas fault, usually have less-cut petals than those from east of the fault such as from the cliffs near Tomales.
The problem needs more field and DNA laboratory work.
Much of the old “morphology-only“ taxonomy is being updated based on laboratory work that requires materials unavailable to the faction of the general public interested in field botany.
|Specimen of Cerastium from Point Reyes.||Specimen of Cerastium from Tomales.|
Text and photos by Doreen Smith. Click on the images to see larger versions.