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Desert Zinnia

Zinnia acerosa


Watercolor image of Desert Zinnia, Zinnia acerosa, © by Michael Plagens

This watercolor illustration was made from a live specimen found near Superior, Arizona. March 14, 1992.

FLOWERS: What appears to be a flower with four to eight white petals is actually a composite flower with large prominate white rays and several yellow disc flowers. The flowers tend to bloom in late spring, April-May, and then some more after summer rains.

LEAVES: Elongate, nearly linear, mostly < 2 cm, two or three leaves clustered at each node.

PERENNIAL : A slightly woody plant (subshrub) - crown is woody and regrows year after year. Branches rarely reach more the ½ m tall.

UNARMED. No real spines or thorns, but the leaf tips can be a bit sharp especially noticable as the folliage stiffens with age.

FRUIT: The flower heads each develop several seeds.

RANGE : Found at mid to upper elevations of the Sonoran Desert on rocky slopes or wash banks. Also ranges prominately into the Chihuahuan Desert of New Mexico, Texas and n. Mexico.

Asteraceae -- Sunflower Family

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Copyright Michael J. Plagens, , page created 6 Nov. 2007,
updated 26 Sept. 2012