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bastard toad-flax (var. umbellata), bastard-toadflax, California comandra (var. Californica), pale comandra (var. pallida)

Leaf

blades light green to grayish or bluish green, lanceolate, elliptic, or ovate, 0.7–5.3 cm, apex obtuse, acute, or acuminate.

Flowers

hypanthium base not dilated.

Comandra umbellata

Distribution
from FNA
AL; AR; AZ; CA; CO; CT; DC; DE; GA; IA; ID; IL; IN; KS; KY; MA; MD; ME; MI; MN; MO; MS; MT; NC; ND; NE; NH; NJ; NM; NV; NY; OH; OK; OR; PA; RI; SC; SD; TN; TX; UT; VA; VT; WA; WI; WV; WY; AB; BC; MB; NB; NS; NT; ON; PE; QC; SK; YT; n Mexico; s Europe (Balkan peninsula)
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[BONAP county map]
Discussion

Subspecies 4 (3 in the flora).

Comandra umbellata is likely the most widespread Santalales species, occurring throughout the United States, southern Canada, and northern Mexico as well as in the Balkan peninsula, where subsp. elegans (Rochel ex Reichenbach) Piehl occurs. Comandra umbellata is the alternate host for comandra blister rust (Cronartium comandrae), which damages pines in North America.

(Discussion copyrighted by Flora of North America; reprinted with permission.)

Key
1. Leaf blades thin, green, not glaucous; pseudodrupes 4–6 mm; rhizome cortex white to beige; Canada, c, e United States.
C. umbellata subsp. umbellata
1. Leaves thin or thick, becoming ± succulent, green to grayish or bluish green, glaucous; pseudodrupes 5–9 mm; rhizome cortex blue, drying blackish; w North America.
→ 2
2. Leaf blade lateral veins obscure on abaxial surface; proximal part of aerial stems not overwintering; herbs 5–33 cm.
C. umbellata subsp. pallida
2. Leaf blade lateral veins apparent on abaxial surface; proximal part of aerial stems overwintering; subshrubs 15–40 cm.
C. umbellata subsp. californica
Source FNA vol. 12, p. 409.
Parent taxa Comandraceae > Comandra
Subordinate taxa
C. umbellata subsp. californica, C. umbellata subsp. pallida, C. umbellata subsp. umbellata
Synonyms Thesium umbellatum
Name authority (Linnaeus) Nuttall: Gen. N. Amer. Pl. 1: 157. (1818)
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