Phacelia ramosissima Douglsas ex Lehm.
Branching Phacelia
Boraginaceae (Borage Family)


Branching phacelia is a prostrate to erect, ± suffrutescent, few-to-many-branched perennial from a woody root crown.  The stems are 1-1/2' to 3' long and are covered with a glandular pubescence of long coarse, stiff, bulb-based hairs and shorter soft spreading hairs.  The leaves are alternate, up to 6" long, pinnately lobed and oblong to broadly ovate in outline.  The lobes are oval to oblong and are crenate or further lobed.  The upper leaves are reduced and almost sessile.  The flowers appear in a tightly coiled inflorescence, with the calyx lobes oblanceolate to spatulate, and the campanulate corolla about 1/4" long, dirty-white or pale bluish to lavender. There are from 7 to 10 3/8"-long, glabrous, much-exserted stamens and a deeply cleft style that is somewhat shorter. The fruit is an ovoid, sharply-bristly capsule with 2-4 deeply-pitted seeds.  Branching phacelia is found on dry rocky slopes, ridges, washes and meadows in chaparral and other plant communities below 7500', blooming from May to August and sometimes later.  These pictures were taken in Eaton Canyon. Ssp. latifolia and ssp. ramosissima are now joined in a single species along with several other ssps.

Click here for Latin name derivations: 1) Phacelia 2) ramosissima
Pronunciation: fa-SEEL-ee-a ra-mo-SIS-si-ma.
Click here for Botanical Term Meanings.