Malacothamnus fremontii

Malacothamnus fremontii

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Encyclopedia
Malacothamnus fremontii is a species of flowering plant in the mallow family
Malvaceae
Malvaceae, or the mallow family, is a family of flowering plants containing over 200 genera with close to 2,300 species. Judd & al. Well known members of this family include okra, jute and cacao...

 known by the common name Frémont's bushmallow (after John C. Frémont
John C. Frémont
John Charles Frémont , was an American military officer, explorer, and the first candidate of the anti-slavery Republican Party for the office of President of the United States. During the 1840s, that era's penny press accorded Frémont the sobriquet The Pathfinder...

).

Description


Malacothamnus fremontii is a stiff, erect shrub
Shrub
A shrub or bush is distinguished from a tree by its multiple stems and shorter height, usually under 5–6 m tall. A large number of plants may become either shrubs or trees, depending on the growing conditions they experience...

 with a branching stem reaching one half to nearly two meters in height. It is coated densely in white fibers, appearing felt
Felt
Felt is a non-woven cloth that is produced by matting, condensing and pressing woollen fibres. While some types of felt are very soft, some are tough enough to form construction materials. Felt can be of any colour, and made into any shape or size....

like. The hairy oval or rounded lobed leaves are several centimeters long. The inflorescence
Inflorescence
An inflorescence is a group or cluster of flowers arranged on a stem that is composed of a main branch or a complicated arrangement of branches. Strictly, it is the part of the shoot of seed plants where flowers are formed and which is accordingly modified...

 is an elongated cluster of many pale purple flowers with hairy petals each up to a centimeter long.

Distribution


Malacothamnus fremontii is endemic to California
California
California is a state located on the West Coast of the United States. It is by far the most populous U.S. state, and the third-largest by land area...

, where it has a scattered distribution throughout the state, growing in chaparral
Chaparral
Chaparral is a shrubland or heathland plant community found primarily in the U.S. state of California and in the northern portion of the Baja California peninsula, Mexico...

and woodlands in several mountain ranges and foothills.

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