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Besseya arizonica Penn.


Family: Scrophulariaceae

Description: Scapes solitary, to 40 cm tall, white-hirsute; leaves 5-15 cm long, ovate to oval, crenate or undulate-crenate, pilose to glabrate, basal leaves rounded to cordate at the base; floral bracts white-ciliate; calyx 3-4 mm long, the lobes oblong-lanceolate or oblong-elliptic, conspicuously ciliate; corolla white, 4-5 mm long, tube very short; staminal filaments exserted; capsule 4-5 mm long nearly circular, glabrous. Flowering from May to August.

Distribution: This species occurs in Coconino and Apache Counties in Arizona and Cibola, McKinley, Socorro, and Sandoval counties in New Mexico.

Specimens Seen or Cited: USDA Forest Service Regional Office herbarium: NM, Cibola County, Cibola NF, Zuni Mtns., E. Side Oso Ridge, 1/4Sec28,T11N, R13W. R.Fletcher, 6/16/1982, Rare in Ponderosa Pine. US National Herbarium: (Type collection) AZ, from the western slopes of San Francisco Peaks @ 8,000 feet. J.B. Leiberg, 6/17/1901.

Habitat: Moist meadows and woods, Douglas fir, ponderosa pine, and gambel oak habitats; 7,000-8,500 feet.

Discussion: NM natural heritage ranks are S4 and G4; indicating that this species is not globally or state rare. I would not recommend that this species be included on a list of rare plants.

Inportant Literature:

Kearney, T.H. and R.H. Peebles. 1951. Arizona Flora.

Martin, W.C. and C.R. Hutchens. 1981. A Flora of New Mexico.

Pennell, F.W. 1933. A revision of Synthyris and Besseya. Proceedings of the Academy of Natural Sciences, Philadelphia, p77-106.

Information Compiled By: Heather Hollis, 1998


Photo credits in header Peniocereus greggii var. greggii © T. Todsen,
Lepidospartum burgessii © M. Howard, Argemone pleiacantha ssp. pinnatisecta © R. Sivinski
Design: J. Mygatt; Copyright © 1999-2005 New Mexico Rare Plant Technical Council