sphaeralcea a difficult genus with weak distinctions l.
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SPHAERALCEA : A DIFFICULT GENUS WITH WEAK DISTINCTIONS ~40 species worldwide ● 15 species in Intermountain Region Need to add “S.” before names; ensure that symbols come across; Italicize scientific names; consistently omit authors Species in Utah 4 species fairly widespread S. coccinea

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Presentation Transcript
slide3

Need to add “S.” before names;

ensure that symbols come across;

Italicize scientific names;

consistently omit authors

species in utah
Species in Utah
  • 4 species fairly widespread
    • S. coccinea
    • S. grossulariifolia
    • S. munroana
    • S. parvifolia
  • 4 species restricted to a single county
  • 6 species endemic to Utah
generic characteristics
Generic Characteristics
  • Herbs or shrubs
  • Stellate pubescence
  • Leaves entire to deeply dissected or compound
  • Inflorescence of solitary flowers, racemes, thyrsoid, panicles
  • Flowers red-orange, lavender, yellow, or rarely white
  • Fruit a schizocarp with several to many mericarps
species identification 1
Species Identification (1)
  • Leaves
    • Shallowly or deeply lobed
    • Length to width ratio
  • Pubescence
    • Density
    • Coarse or delicate
    • Rays slender or not
    • 2 or 3-dimensional
species identification 2
Species identification (2)
  • Inflorescence
    • Thyrsoid
    • Paniculate
    • Racemose
    • Number of flowers/node
  • Calyx
    • Length
    • Lobe length
    • Overall shape
  • Flowers
    • Petal length
inflorescence
Thyrsoid/ paniculate: flowers attached in a cluster at the nodes

Racemose: 1(2,3) flowers/node, all attached directly to main stem

Inflorescence
4 commonly confused species
4 commonly confused species
  • S. coccinea
  • S. grossulariifolia
  • S. munroana
  • S. parvifolia
key to common species
Leaves entire or shallowly lobed

Leaves densely pubescent, relatively thick, margins weakly crenulate - S. parvifolia

Leaves moderately pubescent (greenish), relatively thin, margins coarsely and irregularly crenulate

- S. munroana

Leaves deeply lobed

Inflorescence thyrsoid or paniculate with 2+ flowers/node; mericarps higher than wide

– S. grossulariifolia

Inflorescence racemose with 1(2,3) flowers/node; mericarps nearly as high as wide – S. coccinea

Key to Common Species
sphaeralcea parviflora
Sphaeralcea parviflora
  • Perennial from a thick crown or woody, short branched caudex; typically with multiple, erect to ascending stems and usually short-branched.
  • Herbage gray-green, moderately to densely pubescent; stellate hairs in multiple planes.
slide15

Leaves cauline; petiole 1.5-4(6)cm; blade thickish, about as wide as long, deltate-ovate to suborbicular, sometimes shallowly 3-5 lobed, palmately veined, veins prominent beneath, slightly channeled above.

slide16

Inflorescence relatively narrowly thyrsoid-glomerate; pedicels 2-10 mm, ascending; calyx 5-8(9) mm, lobes ovate, obtuse, densely pubescent; petals 2-10 mm, orange-red; staminal column 3-5.5 mm, glabrous, anthers apical; styles capitate.

slide17

Schizocarp of about 10 mericarps forming a ring 4-5.5 mm in diameter; mericarps 2-seeded, 2.8-4 mm high, 2-2.3 mm wide, pubescent on back and margins. Seeds 1.7-2 mm long, reniform, dark brown to black, patches of minute hairs.

slide18

Washes, roadsides, and among greasewood, blackbrush, sagebrush and juniper communities. 750-2450 m. Southern and lower elevation counterpart to S. munroana. The confluent leaf blades seem to be diagnostic for most specimens of this species.

sphaeralcea munroana
Sphaeralcea munroana
  • Perennial from a thick crown or woody, short branched caudex; typically multiple erect to ascending stems, unbranched or often short-branched.
  • Herbage green, moderately to sparsely pubescent; stellate rays in three planes.
slide21

Leaves cauline; petiole 1.5-4.5(5.5)cm; blade thin, about as wide as long, deltate-ovate, often moderately 3-5 lobed, lobes rounded or obtuse, palmately veined, veins not as prominent beneath.

slide22

Inflorescence relatively narrowly thyrsoid-glomerate; pedicels stout, shorter than the calyx; calyx 4.7-7 mm, lobes ovate, acute, densely pubescent; petals 8-14(18) mm, grenadine; staminal column 4.5-5.7 mm, glabrous to sparsely pubescent, anthers apical; styles capitate.

slide23

Schizocarps of 10-12 mericarps forming a ring 4-5.2 mm in diameter; mericarps 1(2)-seeded, 2-3 mm high, 1.8-2.5 mm wide, apically pubescent on back and margins. Seeds about 1.7 mm long, reniform, dark brown, minutely pubescent.

slide24

Deserts, valleys and foothills among rabbitbrush and sagebrush communities. 640-2400 m. Difficult to distinguish from S. parviflora. S. munroana var. subrhomboidea has 3 distinct lobes reaching almost halfway to the base is found along the Wasatch and Oquirrh Mts. and North into Southern Idaho.

sphaeralcea grossulariifolia
Sphaeralcea grossulariifolia
  • Perennial from a thick crown or woody, short branched caudex; typically multiple erect to ascending stems, unbranched or often short-branched.
  • Herbage greenish, moderately to sparsely pubescent on leaves, densely pubescent on stems; stellate hairs in three planes, often with appressed rays on stems.
slide27

Leaves cauline; petiole (1)1.5-5(7)cm; blade more or less thin, about as wide as long, deltate or broadly ovate in outline, 3-5 lobed sometime appearing 3-foliate, lobes with deeply cleft lateral lobes, lateral lobes asymmetrical, >10 mm wide, palmately veined, veins prominent beneath.

slide28

Inflorescence relatively narrowly thyrsoid-glomerate; pedicels stout, shorter than the calyx, sometimes longer at the lower nodes; calyx 5-11 mm, lobes ovate to lanceolate, acute; petals 11-22 mm, grenadine; staminal column 4-6 mm, glabrous or stellate pubescent, anthers apical; styles capitate.

slide29

Schizocarp of 10-12 mericarps forming a ring 4.5-6.5 mm in diameter; mericarps 1(2)-seeded, 2.5-3.5(4) mm high, 2-3 mm wide, pubescent on dorsal and apical surfaces. Seeds about 2 mm long, reniform, dark brown, minutely puberulent.

slide30

Deserts, valleys and foothills among blackbrush, greasewood, shadscale, rabbitbrush and sagebrush vegetation. 800-2300 m. A complex species with great variation in the dissection of the leaves. Much of the variation likely comes from introgression with other species. It appears to be less common in the Southern portions of its range.

sphaeralcea coccinea
Sphaeralcea coccinea
  • Perennial from a woody, branched caudex, surmounting deep-seated running roots, often forming colonies; stems several to many, decumbent or ascending, unbranched or with short, often poorly developed branch.
  • Herbage grayish-green, stellately pubescent, rays angled away from the surface.
slide33

Leaves cauline; petiole 1-2.5(4)cm; blade, wider than long, broadly ovate to orbicular in outline, pedately 3-foliate, lower lateral lobes deeply divided, lower segments imparting a 5-foliate appearance, mid lobe ternate to pinnatifid.

slide34

Inflorescence: lower flowers solitary in leaf axils and a bracteate raceme above with 1 flower per node, barely elongating in fruit; pedicels 2-10 mm, relatively stout at maturity, ascending; calyx (5)6-9.5 mm, lobes triangular-ovate, acute; petals 10-16(20) mm, deep orange to reddish-orange; staminal column 3-5 mm, sparsely stellate pubescent, anthers apical; styles capitate.

slide35

Schizocarp of 10-14 mericarps forming a ring 4.8-6.7 mm in diameter; mericarps 1(2)-seeded, 2-2.6(4) mm high, 2.4-3 mm wide, rounded dorsally, densely pubescent on dorsally. Seeds about 2 mm long, reniform, dark brown to black.

slide36

Sandy and gravelly soils in greasewood, shadscale, sagebrush, pinyon-juniper and Gambel oak communities. (1000)1375-2750 m. The somewhat smaller stature, branched caudex with running roots, dense pubescence on the leaves, and simple raceme inflorescence help distinguish this species from S. grossulariifolia.