This section is from the book "An Illustrated Flora Of The Northern United States, Canada And The British Possessions Vol3", by Nathaniel Lord Britton, Addison Brown. Also available from Amazon: An Illustrated Flora of the Northern United States, Canada and the British Possessions. 3 Volume Set..
Herbs with opposite or alternate, entire pinnatifid palmatifid or dissected leaves. Flowers small or large, solitary, cymose, capitate, thyrsoid, or paniculate. Calyx campanulate or tubular, 5-toothed or 5-cleft, the sinuses scarious. Corolla funnelform, tubular, campanulate, rotate or salverform, 5-lobed, the lobes ovate, oblong, or obovate. Stamens equally or unequally inserted on the corolla, included or exserted. Ovary oblong or ovoid, 3-celled; ovules solitary or several in each cavity. Capsule ovoid or oblong, 3-celled, at length distending and rupturing the calyx. Seed-coat commonly mucilaginous when wetted, in some species emitting thread-like tubes. [Named for Philip Gil, a Spanish botanist.]
About 100 species, natives of America. Besides the following, many others occur in the southern and western parts of North America. Type species: Gilia laciniata R. & P.
Corolla funnel-form to salverform; leaves pinnatifid or pinnately divided, the segments linear, not rigid. Flowers thyrsoid-paniculate or corymbose-paniculate. Corolla 1-2' long; plants 1°-4° tall. Flowers paniculate, white.
1. G. longiflora.
Flowers narrowly thyrsoid, red.
2. G. aggregata.
3. G. pittnatifida.
Flowers narrowly thyrsoid-spicate.
4. G. spicata.
Flowers in dense or capitate cymes, or heads; flower-clusters leafy-bracted. Perennial; corolla-tube not longer than the calyx.
5. G. iberidifolia.
Annual; corolla-tube 2-3 times as long as the calyx.
6. G. pumila.
Corolla rotate; leaf-segments acicular.
7. G. acerosa.
Annual, glabrous, paniculately branched, 1°-2° high. Leaves all alternate, sessile, 1'-2 1/2' long, pin-nately divided into linear-filiform segments or the uppermost entire; flowers numerous, white, paniculate, about 2' long; calyx-teeth triangular-lanceolate, acuminate, shorter than the tube; corolla salverform, its tube narrow, 4 or 5 times as long as the orbicular or ovate, rounded or pointed, spreading lobes; stamens unequally inserted; ovules 8-12 in each cell; capsule narrowly oblong, exceeding or equalling the calyx; seed-coat mucilaginous and emitting spiral threads when wetted.
In dry soil, Nebraska and Colorado to Texas and Arizona. May-Sept.
Cantua aggregata Pursh, Fl. Am. Sept. 147. 1814. Gilia aggregata Spreng, Syst. 1: 626. 1825.
Biennial, pubescent or puberulent; stem simple or sparingly branched, 2°-4° high, leafy at least below. Leaves alternate, the basal often tufted, mostly petioled, 1'- 3' long, pinnately parted into narrowly linear segments; inflorescence narrowly thyrsoid-paniculate, often 12' long; flowers sessile or very nearly so in small peduncled clusters, scarlet or red; corolla tubular-funnelform, the tube 1'-i 1/2' long, slightly thicker upward, the limb cleft into ovate or lanceolate acute or acuminate spreading or recurved lobes; stamens unequally or about equally inserted in the throat; ovules numerous; seeds mucilaginous and emitting spiral threads when wetted.
In dry soil, western Nebraska (according to . Coulter) to Texas and Mexico, west to British Columbia and California. June-Aug.
Gilia pinnatifida Nutt.; A. Gray, Proc. Am. Acad. 8:
Biennial or perennial from a deep root, much branched, viscid-glandular, 6'-2° high. Leaves thick, pinnatifid, the basal tufted, 1-3' long, the segments linear-oblong, sometimes toothed, obtuse or acutish, 2"-6" long, those of the stem alternate, smaller, the uppermost minute and entire; flowers very numerous, small, paniculate, some sessile, some petioled; calyx 5-lobed, the lobes lanceolate to ovate; corolla salverform, 3"-5" long, the limb violet or blue, its white tube longer than the calyx and its obovate lobes; stamens exserted; seeds not mucilaginous nor emitting spiral threads when wetted.
In sandy soil, western Nebraska and Wyoming to New Mexico. Has been mistaken for G. inconspicua, June-Aug.