Polygala californica

California Milkwort

Mound, numerous upright and decumbent stems from woody base. Leaves 1–2 in. long, oval, dark green. Inflorescence thornless, a small cluster of 1/2 in. flowers at stem tip, pink or rarely white. Flower with 2 wing-like side sepals larger than same-colored petals; upper petal ridged to resemble 2 connected petals, and notched or contorted; lowest petal folded or contorted, enclosing 8 stamens and pistil. Self-fertile flowers clustered near base of stems. Seedpod flattened, oval, containing 1 seed. Grows among shrubs, on exposed slopes, at low elevations.

  • Rarity: Uncommon
  • Flowering Time: All Spring
  • Life Cycle: Perennial
  • Height: 2--12 inches
  • Habitat: West-Side Forest, Shrub-Steppe
  • Found In: Siskiyous
  • Native: Yes