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Physaria gooddingii
(Goodding's bladderpod)

[taxon report][distribution map][all photos][line drawing]



Family: Brassicaceae

Scientific Name: Physaria gooddingii (Rollins & Shaw) O'Kane & Al-Shehbaz

Synonyms: Lesquerella gooddingii Rollins & Shaw

Vernacular Name: Goodding's bladderpod

R-E-D Code: 1-1-2

Description: Annual or biennial, densely pubescent; trichomes sessile or short-stipitate, smooth or fine granular, rays long and slender, simple or infrequently forked near base, not appressed, some rays erect; stems several, stout and erect or the outer ones decumbent, simple or branched, stiff and densely foliate, to 4 dm high; basal leaves obovate or elliptical, sinuate or shallowly dentate, petiolate, to about 3 cm long; upper stem leaves sessile, lower usually short-petiolate, obovate to broadly elliptical, sinuate or shallowly toothed, 1-3 cm long; inflorescences compact and dense, elongating in fruit; petals yellow, 6.5-8 mm long; fruiting pedicels somewhat expanding at summit, sigmoid or recurved in age; silicles sessile or nearly so (not stipitate), roughly oblong and broadly elliptical, 5-8 mm long, strongly compressed parallel to the plane of the septum, valves pubescent on exterior with spreading trichomes (or not), sparsely so on interior; styles 3-5 mm long; ovules 2-3 per locule. Flowers June to September.

Similar Species: In habit, Physaria gooddingii is similar to P. aurea, both being short-lived and having densely leafy stems, but even sterile plants of P. gooddingii can be distinguished by the trichomes that have slender, erect rays. Also, P. aurea has distinctive recurved fruiting pedicels whereas they are sigmoid or curved in P. gooddingii. An almost unique feature of P. gooddingii is silicles that are strongly compressed parallel to the septum.


Distribution: New Mexico, Catron and Sierra counties; adjacent Arizona, Greenlee County.

Habitat: Open areas in piņon-juniper woodland and ponderosa pine forest; 1,800-2,300 m (6,000-7,500 ft).

Remarks: Molecular, morphological, distributional, and ecological data strongly support the union of Physaria and Lesquerella. The genus Lesquerella has about 75 species and the genus Physaria has about 22 species, but Physaria is the older name. The rules of botanical nomenclature require that the older name be retained, thus all species of Lesquerella have been transferred to Physaria (Al-Shehbaz and O'Kane 2002). The authors petitioned for an exception to this rule for Lesquerella, but were denied.

This plant is found in several of the mountain ranges that compose the Gila massif.

Conservation Considerations: Physaria gooddingii is not threatened by the prevailing land uses within its range. It occurs occasionally on highway rights-of-way where some populations may be susceptible to disturbance.

Important Literature (*Illustration):

Al-Shehbaz, I.A. and S.L. O'Kane, Jr. 2002. Lesquerella is united with Physaria (Brassicaceae). Novon: A Journal for Botanical Nomenclature from the Missouri Botanical Garden 12:319-329.

*New Mexico Native Plants Protection Advisory Committee. 1984. A handbook of rare and endemic plants of New Mexico. University of New Mexico Press, Albuquerque.

Rollins, R.C. 1993. The Cruciferae of continental North America. Stanford University Press, Stanford, California.

Rollins, R.C. and E.A. Shaw. 1973. The genus Lesquerella (Cruciferae) in North America. Harvard University Press, Cambridge, Massachusetts.

Information Compiled By: David Bleakly, 1999; last updated 2006

Agency Status:
Taxon USFWS State of NM USFS BLM Navajo Nation Natural Heritage NM Global Rank
Physaria gooddingiiSoCSoC...S3G3?


Photo credits in header Peniocereus greggii var. greggii © T. Todsen,
Lepidospartum burgessii © M. Howard, Argemone pleiacantha ssp. pinnatisecta © R. Sivinski
©2005 New Mexico Rare Plant Technical Council