Physaria calcicola
Author: Rollins


Rocky Mountain bladderpod


Brassicaceae (Mustard Family)

Close up of Physaria calcicola by David G. Anderson
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Close up of Physaria calcicola by Renee Rondeau
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Close up of Physaria calcicola by Steve O'Kane
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Taxonomic Comments

=Lesquerella calcicola

Ranks and Status

Global rank: G3
State rank: S3
Federal protection status: None
State protection status: None

[+] Description and Phenology

Physaria calcicola by Reed Rollins from: Studies in the Genus Lesquerella by Reed C. Rollins, American Journal of Botany, Vol. 26, No. 6. (Jun., 1939), pp. 419-421.
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General description: This yellow flowered perennial is silvery-stellate throughout.  The caudex is simple or closely branched.  Stems are 10-30 cm long with radial basal leaves.  Outer stems are often decumbent.  Leaves are oblanceolate to linear.  Basal leaves are 2-4 mm wide, to 7 (10) cm long, flat or folded but not involute; outer stems often decumbent.  The racemes do not elongate in fruit; the fruit are crowded at the top.  Fruit is 5-9 mm long.  Pedicel forms a sigmoid shape (Harrington 1954, Weber and Wittmann 2012, Ackerfield 2012).

Look Alikes: Physaria fendleri has trichomes with rays fused to half or more their length, while P. calcicola has trichome rays unfused. This character is very easy to see with a hand lens (pers. comm. O'Kane 2014).

Phenology: Colorado Natural Heritage Program occurrence records suggest that this species flowers in May and June, and produces fruit in June-September, or even later in the calendar year (Colorado Natural Heritage Program 2012).

[+] Herbarium Photos

Images of Physaria calcicola housed at the Colorado State University Herbarium.

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[+] Habitat

Habitat of Physaria calcicola by Renee Rondeau
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Habitat of Physaria calcicola by Stephanie Neid
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Shale barrens within grassland and pinyon-juniper mosaic. Other commonly associated species include Cercocarpus montanus, Frankenia jamesii, Gutierrezia sarothrae, Oryzopsis hymenoides, Hilaria jamesii, Melampodium leucanthum, Oonopsis foliosa ssp. foliosa, Tetraneuris acaulis, Eriogonum spp., as well as other globally rare shale barren species such as Mirabilis rotundifolia and Oonopsis puebloensis.

Elevation Range: 4,780 - 9,816 feet (1,457 - 2,992 meters)

[+] Distribution

Distribution of Physaria calcicola in Colorado according to mapped land ownership/management boundaries (CNHP 2012, COMaP v9 ).
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Distribution of Physaria calcicola in Colorado
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Colorado endemic: No
Global range: Known from the Arkansas River Valley in southeastern Colorado (Conejos, El Paso, Fremont, Huerfano, Las Animas, and Pueblo counties) and adjacent northern New Mexico (Union County). Estimated range in Colorado is 22,758 square kilometers (8787 square miles), calculated in GIS by drawing a minimum convex polygon around the known occurrences (CNHP Scorecard 2008).
State range: Known from El Paso, Fremont, Huerfano, Las Animas, and Pueblo counties in Colorado.

[+] Threats and Management Issues

Summary results of an analysis of the status of Physaria calcicola based on several ranking factors. This species was concluded to be “Weakly Conserved”. From Rondeau et al. 2011.
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The primary threat at this time is considered to be housing/urban development. The species may also be threatened by military maneuvers (on military lands), recreational uses, and noxious weed invasions. This species occurs in areas that are experiencing rapid development pressures (Colorado Natural Heritage Program 2012).

[+] References

    • Ackerfield, J. 2012. The Flora of Colorado. Colorado State University Herbarium. 433 pp.
    • Al-Shehbaz, I. A., and S. L. O'Kane. 2002. Lesquerella is united with Physaria (Brassicaceae). Novon 12:319-329.
    • Beardsley, M. and D. A. Steingraeber. 2013. Population dynamics, rarity and risk of extirpation for populations of Mimulus gemmiparus (budding monkeyflower) on National Forests of Colorado. A research report submitted to the USFS Forest Service. Arapaho and Roosevelt National Forets and Pawnee National Grassland. pp 17. Accessed online on May 11 at: http://www.r5.fs.fed.us/wildflowers/Rare_Plants/profiles/Critically_Imperiled/mimulus_gemmiparus/ documents/USFS_MimulusStatusReport2013.pdf
    • Bleakly, D.L. 1998. New Mexico Rare Plants: Lesquerella calcicola Rollins. New Mexico Rare Plant Technical Council, Albuquerque, New Mexico. Online. Available: http://nmrareplants.unm.edu (Accessed 2005).
    • Colorado Natural Heritage Program. 2006. The Third Annual Colorado Rare Plant Symposium: G2 Plants of Southeast Colorado. Symposium Minutes. Available on-line http://www.cnhp.colostate.edu/teams/botany.asp#symposia.
    • Colorado Natural Heritage Program. 2012. Biodiversity Tracking and Conservation System. Colorado State University, Fort Collins, CO.
    • Colorado Natural Heritage Program. 2012. The Ninth Annual Colorado Rare Plant Symposium: G2 and G3 Plants of Southeastern Colorado. Symposium Minutes. Available on-line http://www.cnhp.colostate.edu/teams/botany.asp#symposia.
    • Flora of North America Editorial Committee, ed. (FNA). 1993+. Flora of North America North of Mexico. Oxford Univ. Press, New York, Oxford.
    • Harrington, H.D. 1954. Manual of the plants of Colorado. Sage Press, Chicago. 666 pp.
    • Kartesz, J.T. 1994. A synonymized checklist of the vascular flora of the United States, Canada, and Greenland. 2nd edition. 2 vols. Timber Press, Portland, OR.
    • Lavender, A.E., M.M. Fink, S.E. Linn, D.M. Theobald. 2011. Colorado Ownership, Management, and Protection v9 Database. Colorado Natural Heritage Program and Geospatial Centroid, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, CO. (30 September).
    • Martin, W.C., and C.R. Hutchins. 1980-1981. A flora of New Mexico. 1980, Vol. 1; 1981, Vol. 2. J. Cramer, in der A.R. Gantner Verlag, K.G., Vaduz, Liechtenstein. 2591 pp.
    • Neely, B., S. Panjabi, E. Lane, P. Lewis, C. Dawson, A. Kratz, B. Kurzel, T. Hogan, J. Handwerk, S. Krishnan, J. Neale, and N. Ripley. 2009. Colorado Rare Plant Conservation Strategy, Developed by the Colorado Rare Plant conservation Initiative. The Nature Conservancy, Boulder, Colorado, 117 pp.
    • Rollins, R.C., and E.A. Shaw. 1973. The genus Lesquerella (Cruciferae) in North America. Harvard Univ. Press. Cambridge, MA. 288 pp.
    • Rondeau, R., K. Decker, J. Handwerk, J. Siemers, L. Grunau, and C. Pague. 2011. The state of Colorado's biodiversity 2011. Prepared for The Nature Conservancy. Colorado Natural Heritage Program, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, Colorado.
    • Sivinski, R., and K. Lightfoot, eds. 1994. Inventory of the rare and endangered plants of New Mexico. 2nd edition. Miscellaneous Publication No. 3, New Mexico Forestry and Resources Conservation Division, New Mexico Energy, Minerals and Natural Resources Dept., Santa Fe. 46 pp.
    • USDA, NRCS. 2013. The PLANTS Database. National Plant Data Team, Greensboro, NC 27401-4901 USA.
    • Weber, W. A. and R. C. Wittmann. 2012. Colorado Flora, Eastern Slope, A Field Guide to the Vascular Plants, Fourth Edition. Boulder, Colorado. 555 pp.
    • Weber, W. A. and R. C. Wittmann. 2012. Colorado Flora, Western Slope, A Field Guide to the Vascular Plants, Fourth Edition. Boulder, Colorado. 532 pp.
    • Weber, W.A., and R.C. Wittmann. 2012a. Colorado Flora, Eastern Slope, a field guide to the vascular plants, fourth edition. University of Colorado Press. Boulder, Colorado. 555 pp.

Last Updated

2012-12-12