Arizona Naturalists >>> Ponderosa Woodland Flora >>> Sterculiaceae >>> Fremontodendron californicum

Flannel Bush

Fremontodendron californicum

Flannel Bush, Fremontodendron californicum, photo © by Mike Plagens

Observed along a roadside in the ponderosa forest near the summit of the Mazatzal Mountains, Maricopa Co., Arizona, USA. August 2011.
The abundant nectar in the flower has drawn a group of Crematogaster ants, a small fly, and an even smaller beetle.

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FLOWERS: Five bright yellow petals free to the base. Diameter of flower is about 13mm. Easily seen in the photo are the stamen filaments fused into a tube.

LEAVES: Leaves and twigs are coated with a thick layer of velvety hairs from which comes the name 'flannel bush'.

SHRUB: In Arizona's mountains this plant attains a size of 2 to 3 meters.

RANGE: Uncommon in ponderosa woodlands: best chance to find this plant is in the Mazatzal Mountains at the boundary of Maricopa and Gila Counties. It is more common in the mountains of southern California.

FRUIT: A dry capsule that splits open into about five sections.

UNARMED. Thornless.

Sterculiaceae -- Cacao Family
sometimes combined into Malvaceae -- Mallow Family

More Information:

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Arizona Naturalist
Arizona's Ponderosa Woodlands
The Flora of Arizona's Ponderosa Woodlands


Copyright Michael J. Plagens, page created 03 April 2012