Page authors: Don Knoke, David Giblin
Rupertia physodes
forest scurfpea, California tea

Distribution: Occurring west of the Cascades crest in Washington; British Columbia to California, disjunct in northeastern Oregon and adjacent Idaho.

Habitat: Prairie and forest edges at low elevations.

Flowers: May-June

Origin: Native

Growth Duration: Perennial

Conservation Status: Not of concern


Herbaceous, glandular-dotted, sparingly branched perennial 5-7 dm. tall.


Leaves alternate, trifoliate, the leaflets ovate-lanceolate, entire, 2.5-4 cm. long; stipules linear.


Inflorescence a short, congested, axillary, pedunculate raceme with 15-20 flowers; flowers pea-like, 9-12 mm. long; calyx black-hairy, tubular, 6-8 mm. long, the 5 teeth lanceolate, equal; banner of the corolla yellowish-green, about equaling the wings, the keel purplish-tipped; stamens 10, the filaments united.


Pod 5 mm. long, globose, sparsely dark-hairy.

Accepted Name:
Rupertia physodes (Douglas ex Hook.) J.W. Grimes
Publication: Memoirs of the New York Botanical Garden 61: 53. 1990.

Synonyms & Misapplications:
Psoralea physodes Douglas ex Hook. [HC]
Additional Resources:

PNW Herbaria: Specimen records of Rupertia physodes in the Consortium of Pacific Northwest Herbaria database.

WA Flora Checklist: Rupertia physodes checklist entry.

OregonFlora: Rupertia physodes information.

E-Flora BC: Rupertia physodes atlas page.

CalPhotos: Rupertia physodes photos.

USDA Plants: Rupertia physodes information.

11 photographs:
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