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Sonoran Desert Mustards, Page 2

Mostly annuals of winter and spring. Some perennials and blooming at other times of year. Distinctive flower morphology: 4 sepals, 4 petals, 4 + 2 Stamens (two sizes). Many, many species in the Sonoran Desert.


Nasturtium oficinale

Perennial Rockcress

Arabis perennans

Rorippa oficinale photo by Mike Plagens

Succulent, low-growing annual in shallow waters of riparian streams. Small, four-petaled flowers. Long established in wild from cultivation. Detailed Description

Photo © by Mike Plagens

From a woody base new foliage and flowers regrow each year. Stems tall with small purple flowers. High on rocky slopes and more common at elevations above the Sonoran Desert. Detailed Description

Coulter's Lyre Pod

Lyrocarpa coulteri

Western Wallflower

Erysimum capitatum

Pen & Ink by Mike Plagens

Obscure, viney plant that scrambles up through shrubs. Perennial, but above ground portions regrow each spring, precipitation permitting. Petals are brownish. Southern portions of Sonoran Desert, e.g. Organ Pipe NM.  Detailed Description

Photo © by Mike Plagens

Tall herbaceous plant often above one meter tall with a cluster of orange or yellow flowers at top of spike. Upper Sonoran Desert only above 1000 m elevation. Detailed Description

Lyreleaf Jewelflower
Twist Flower

Streptanthus carinatus

Photo © by Mike Plagens

The slender flowers have petal ends rolled down exposing darker, purplish inner surface; partly flattened pods with many seeds. Frequent in spring Tucson area. Detailed Description

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Wright's Thelypody

Thelypodium wrightii

Desert Prince's Plume

Stanleya pinnata

Photo © by Mike Plagens

Stout main stem 1 to 2 meters tall with lateral branches ending in dense spikes of bright white flowers. Partial shade in riparian habitat. Detailed Description

Photo © by Mike Plagens

Mojave and Great Basin Desert plant found on west and north fringes of Sonoran. Tall spikes of bright yellow flowers. Detailed Description

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Sonoran Desert Places


Copyright Michael J. Plagens, 1999-2010