Perityle staurophylla var. staurophylla
[taxon report][distribution map][all photos][line drawing]
(New Mexico rock daisy)
Scientific Name: Perityle staurophylla (Barneby) Shinners var. staurophylla
Synonyms: Laphamia staurophylla Barneby
Vernacular Name: New Mexico rock daisy
R-E-D Code: 1-1-3
Description: Perennial herb from a woody base; stems single to many, 15-40 cm tall; leaves usually alternate, 1.7-3.8 cm long, 1.0-2.5 cm wide, mostly deeply and narrowly three-lobed, somewhat cruciform; flower heads terminal, solitary or in small clusters, somewhat bell-shaped, involucral bracts lance-shaped, about 4-5 mm long; ray flowers 4-8, yellow, to 6 mm long; disk flowers 30-40, yellow, about 3 mm long; achenes dark brown to black, usually bearing two stout awns at the summit. Flowers June to September.
Similar Species: Perityle cornopifolia grows in the same region but has white rays. Perityle staurophylla var. homoflora lacks ray flowers.
Distribution: New Mexico, Doņa Ana, Otero, and Sierra counties.
Habitat: Crevices in limestone cliffs and boulders, usually on protected north and east exposures; 1,500-2,100 m (4,900-7,000 ft).
Remarks: Variety staurophylla occurs on the cliffs of several small desert mountain ranges whereas var. homoflora is restricted to the north end of the San Andres Mountains. Both varieties are common in their limited habitats.
Conservation Considerations: The cliffside habitats of this endemic plant offer a great deal of protection from human impacts.
Important Literature (*Illustration):
Barneby, R.C. 1957. A new species of Laphamia from New Mexico. Leaflets of Western Botany 8:168-170.
Niles, W.E. 1970. Taxonomic investigations in the genera Perityle and Laphamia. Memoirs of the New York Botanical Garden 21:1-82.
*New Mexico Native Plants Protection Advisory Committee. 1984. A handbook of rare and endemic plants of New Mexico. University of New Mexico Press, Albuquerque.
Powell, A.M. 1973. Taxonomy of Perityle section Laphamia. Sida 5:61-128.
Information Compiled By:
Yvonne Chauvin, 1999