The Gymnosperm Database


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Conservation status

Ephedra coryi

Reed 1936

Common names

Cory's ephedra (Stevenson 1993).

Taxonomic notes


"Shrubs rhizomatous, forming clumps, erect, 0.25-1.5 m, 3-5 m diam. Bark red-brown, cracked and irregularly fissured. Branches alternate or whorled, becoming rigid, angle of divergence about 25°. Twigs bright green, becoming yellow-green with age, not viscid, ridges between longitudinal grooves papillate, slightly scabrous; internodes 2-5 cm. Terminal buds conic, 1-3 mm. Leaves opposite, 2-5 mm, connate to 1/2-3/4 their length; bases thickened, brown, persistent, becoming hard, enlarged, and black; apex acute. Pollen cones 2-several at node, obovoid, 4-6 mm, on very short, scaly peduncles (rarely sessile); bracts opposite, 5-9 pairs, light yellow, ovate, 2-4 × 2-3 mm, membranous, slightly connate at base; bracteoles slightly exceeding bracts; sporangiophores 2-4 mm, 1/4 exserted, with 5-7 sessile to short-stalked (less than 1 mm) microsporangia. Seed cones 2-several at node, obovoid to nearly globose, 7-15 mm, on smooth peduncles, 5-25 mm, with 1 pair of basal and 1 pair of nearly terminal bracts, at least in early cones; bracts opposite, 3-4 pairs, ovate to circular, 5-8 × 5-12 mm, inner pairs becoming fleshy (at least centrally) and orange at maturity. Seeds 2, ellipsoid, 5-8 × 2-4 mm, brown to chestnut, smooth. ... Coning March-April" (Stevenson 1993).

Distribution and Ecology

US: New Mexico & Texas at 500-2300 m in sandy, semiarid areas. In New Mexico it is represented only by an isolated population in the Caballo Mountains; peduncles of these plants are only 5-10 mm long (Stevenson 1993, R. Spellenberg email 2009.11.19).

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Last Modified 2017-12-29