Field Notes from the Yuma Chapter 2019-2020 Season Arizona Native Plant Society “Plant Families from Asteraceae to Zygophyllaceae”

Posted Mar 27, 2020

Members of the Yuma Chapter are devoting meeting time to the study of plant families represented in the Sonoran Desert flora of our area. Asteraceae, the first family we studied, was presented remotely in December via YouTube by chapter president Valerie Morrill. In February, Erv Barnes followed with a discussion on the puzzling Zygophyllaceae. Later that month a group trekked to the Imperial Sand Dunes in California to find examples of both plant families, spring wildflowers, and to inspect an unusual growth form of creosote bush, Larrea tridentata. We stopped at two places off I-8. The first stop south of Sidewinder Road exit and the second was at the historical Old Plank Road ACEC on BLM west of the Grays Well exit.

Following is a plant list and photographs recorded by member Linda Johnson.

Desert willow                          Chilopsis linearis

Creosote bush                          Larrea tridentata
Emory Indigo bush                Psorothamnus emoryii
Giant Dune Buckwheat         Eriogonum deserticola
Joint Fur, Mormon Tea        Ephedra (probably trifurca)
Russian thistle                        Salsola sp.

Annuals and low-growing perennials
Ajo lily                                     Hesperocallis undulata
Bugseed                                  Dicoria canescens
Crinklemat                             Tiquilia plicata
Cryptantha                             Cryptantha sp.
Dune primrose                      Oenothera deltoides ssp. deltoides
Locoweed/milkvetch            Astragalus sp.
Sand verbena                         Abronia villosa
Spanish needles                     Palofoxia arida
Spectacle pod                         Dimorphicarpa pinnatifida
Suncup                                    Camissonia sp.

Dune primrose or bird cage primrose