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Peritoma serrulata

Peritoma serrulata. Synonym: Cleome serrulata. (Rocky Mountain Bee Plant)
Cleomaceae.  Synonym: Capparaceae (Caper Family)  (Cleome Family)

Foothills, montane.  Roadsides, disturbed areas. Summer, fall.
Denny Lake, Cortez, September 6, 2007.

Cleome serrulata can grow to six feet tall with very attractive pink flowers having long exserted stamens. 

Leaves (best seen in the right center of the photograph at left) are palmately compound  with three long and narrow divisions.  The plant is found along roadsides and other disturbed areas and often grows in attractive clusters of many plants.

The plant was named by Frederick Pursh in 1814 from a collection made by Meriwether Lewis: "August 25, 1804, growth of the open Prairies" near Vermillion, South Dakota.  "Serrulata" means "fine toothed" and refers to the minutely serrulate  sepals.

 

Peritoma serrulata

Peritoma serrulata. Synonym: Cleome serrulata. (Rocky Mountain Bee Plant)
Cleomaceae.  Synonym: Capparaceae (Caper Family)  (Cleome Family)

Foothills, montane.  Roadsides, disturbed areas. Summer, fall.
Denny Lake, Cortez, September 6, 2007.

Fruits are pendulous and from 1 to 3 inches long.

Click to see the closely related Peritoma lutea.

Peritoma serrulata

Peritoma serrulata. Synonym: Cleome serrulata. (Rocky Mountain Bee Plant)
Cleomaceae.  Synonym: Capparaceae (Caper Family)  (Cleome Family)

Foothills, montane.  Roadsides, disturbed areas. Summer, fall.
Denny Lake, Cortez, September 6, 2007.

Peritoma serrulata

Peritoma serrulata. Synonym: Cleome serrulata. (Rocky Mountain Bee Plant)
Cleomaceae.  Synonym: Capparaceae (Caper Family)  (Cleome Family)

Foothills, montane.  Roadsides, disturbed areas. Summer, fall.
Denny Lake, Cortez, September 6, 2007.

Leaflets are long, narrow, and in threes, quite reminiscent of Trifolium leaves of Fabaceae (Pea Family).

Range map © John Kartesz,
Floristic Synthesis of North America

State Color KeySpecies present in state and native
Species present in state and exotic
Species not present in state

County Color Key

Species present and not rare
Species present and rare
Species extirpated (historic)
Species extinct
Species noxious
Species exotic and present
Native species, but adventive in state
Eradicated
Questionable presence

Range map for Peritoma serrulata