Eriogonum subg. Ganysma

(S. Watson) Greene

Fl. Francisc., 151. 1891.

Basionym: Eriogonum sect. Ganysma S. Watson Proc. Amer. Acad. Arts 12: 259. 1877
Treatment appears in FNA Volume 5. Treatment on page 380. Mentioned on page 223, 381, 431, 433, 434, 435, 437, 439, 441, 445.

Herbs, spreading to erect or prostrate polycarpic perennials and annuals, glabrous, hispid, tomentose, floccose, hirsute, villous, viscid, or sometimes glandular; taproot usually not woody. Stems spreading to erect, usually without persistent leaf bases, tomentose, floccose, hirsute, villous, viscid, short-hispid, or glabrous, sometimes glandular; caudex absent or compact, spreading; aerial flowering stems prostrate to erect, slender to stout, solid or hollow, sometimes fistulose, not disarticulating in ringlike segments proximally, usually arising directly from root. Leaves persistent or marcescent, basal, sometimes sheathing, or basal and cauline, not fasciculate; blade variously lanate, tomentose, floccose, hirsute, villous, pilose, hispid, or glabrous, sometimes glandular. Inflorescences cymose, rarely cymose-paniculate, paniculate or racemose, open or diffuse; bracts 3(–8), semileaflike or more often scalelike. Peduncles absent or erect, ascending, spreading, horizontal, cernuous, recurved, or deflexed, filiform to capillary to slender. Involucres 1 per node, not appressed to the inflorescence branches, turbinate to campanulate or hemispheric; teeth 4–5(–8), erect to spreading, very rarely lobelike and reflexed. Flowers not attenuate at base, without stipelike base; perianth various shades of white, yellow, pink, or red, glabrous, hispid, pilose, hirsute, puberulent, villous, pustulose, or glandular abaxially, usually glabrous (rarely tomentose) adaxially; tepals connate proximally 1/5–1/2 their length, monomorphic or dimorphic; stamens included or exserted; filaments glabrous or pilose proximally. Achenes various shades of brown, or black, not winged, lenticular to 3-gonous, glabrous [sparsely pilose]. Seeds: embryo curved.


w North America, mainly in arid regions.


Species 62 (52 in the flora).

The species of subg. Ganysma not found in the flora area are: Eriogonum angelense Moran, E. austrinum (S. Stokes) Reveal, E. galioides I. M. Johnston, E. intricatum Bentham, E. moranii Reveal, E. pilosum S. Stokes, E. preclarum Reveal, E. repens (S. Stokes) Reveal, and E. scalare S. Watson. All occur only in Baja California, Mexico.

The existence of an undescribed species restricted to San Bernardino County, California, has been known for some two decades. It was briefly in cultivation. It is related to Eriogonum austrinum and E. moranii of east-central Baja California, Mexico. Until this species can be studied in the field and adequate material obtained, the California plants cannot be named formally.

Various species of subg. Ganysma are food plants for the small dotted-blue butterfly (Philotiella speciosa).

Selected References



1 Plants perennials, sometimes flowering first year > 2
1 Plants annuals, rarely perennials > 5
2 Leaf blades pilose or hirsute on one or both surfaces > 3
2 Leaf blades densely tomentose on one or both surfaces > 4
3 Perianths densely hirsute; leaf blades short-hirsute on both surfaces or at least adaxially; Arizona, s and ec California, nw and sw Colorado, s Nevada, nw New Mexico, s and e Utah Eriogonum inflatum
3 Perianths glabrous; leaf blades sparsely pilose on both surfaces; nc and nw Arizona Eriogonum arizonicum
4 Peduncles absent or horizontal, 0.1-2 mm; leaves basal, blade densely tomentose abaxially, tomentose to floccose or glabrous adaxially; se California Eriogonum cf. moranii (see discussion under subg. Ganysma1)
4 Peduncles erect to spreading, 6-60 mm; leaves basal or basal and sheathing up stems, blade densely tomentose on both surfaces; se Colorado, New Mexico, w Oklahoma, w and c Texas Eriogonum tenellum
5 Leaves basal and cauline, not basal only or basal and sheathing up stem > 6
5 Leaves basal and sometimes sheathing up stem, not basal and cauline > 18
6 Involucres glandular-puberulent or puberulent > 7
6 Involucres glabrous, hispid, or villous, not puberulent or glandular-puberulent > 11
7 Tepals monomorphic, oblong to elliptic, not inflated > 8
7 Tepals dimorphic, outer ones elliptic, obovate, spatulate, or roundish, sometimes inflated apically or basally, inner ones narrowly lanceolate to spatulate > 9
8 Involucres not densely tomentose abaxially, 1.8-2 mm; flowers 2-2.5 mm; s California Eriogonum gracillimum
8 Involucres densely tomentose abaxially, 2.7-3 mm; flowers 1.5-1.7 mm; sc California Eriogonum gossypinum
9 Outer tepals elliptic to obovate, not obviously inflated or, if so, only proximally; inner tepals narrowly spatulate; stamens exserted; s California Eriogonum angulosum
9 Outer tepals elliptic to roundish or obovate to spatulate, obviously inflated proximally or distally; inner tepals narrowly spatulate or lanceolate; stamens included; widespread w United States > 10
10 Outer tepals inflated from base to middle; peduncles and involucres glandular-puberulent; Arizona, ec and s California, sw Idaho, Nevada, nw New Mexico, e Oregon, w Utah, se Washington Eriogonum maculatum
10 Outer tepals inflated above middle; peduncles and involucres glandular; s California Eriogonum viridescens
11 Perianths hirsutulous with hooked hairs; California (E. inerme introduced and disjunct in Boise County, Idaho) > 12
11 Perianths glabrous or, if hairy, without hooked hairs; widespread > 13
12 Involucres 2-flowered; achene beaks exserted; flowers 0.8-1.1 mm Eriogonum hirtiflorum
12 Involucres 4-6-flowered; achene beaks included; flowers 1.2-1.8 mm Eriogonum inerme
13 Basal leaves essentially glabrous on both surfaces; e Montana, sc North Dakota and w South Dakota or ne New Mexico, or if glabrous or thinly floccose then perianths densely short-villous and plants of California > 14
13 Basal leaves villous to hoary-tomentose or hispid on both surfaces; Arizona, Nevada, New Mexico (not Colfax County), Utah, Texas, Idaho, Oregon, and California > 16
14 Peduncles capillary, 0.5-2 cm; perianths densely short-villous; sw California Eriogonum ordii
14 Peduncles slender, absent or confined to first node, 0.3-1.5 cm; perianths sparsely hispid or glabrous; e Montana to n New Mexico > 15
15 Perianths sparsely hispid, (1.2-)1.5-2.5 mm; involucres turbinate, 1-1.5(-2) × 0.8-1.5 mm; e Montana, sc North Dakota, w South Dakota Eriogonum visheri
15 Perianths glabrous, 1.2-2 mm; involucres turbinate-campanulate, 1-1.3 × 1-1.2 mm; ne (Colfax County) New Mexico Eriogonum aliquantum
16 Basal leaf blades oblong to obovate, villous to hoary-tomentose on both surfaces; tepals dimorphic, those of outer whorl orbiculate-cordate, not basally 2-saccate; Arizona, New Mexico, w Texas Eriogonum abertianum
16 Basal leaf blades linear-lanceolate to linear-oblanceolate and densely lanate abaxially, or linear and hispid on both surfaces; tepals dimorphic, those of outer whorl oblong-ovate and 2-saccate proximally, or monomorphic; widespread > 17
17 Tepals dimorphic, those of outer whorl 2-saccate proximally; involucres 5-toothed; n and e Arizona, se Nevada, New Mexico, sw Utah Eriogonum pharnaceoides
17 Tepals monomorphic, not 2-saccate proximally; involucres 4-toothed; e California, c Idaho, w Nevada, s Oregon Eriogonum spergulinum
18 Leaf blades variously glabrous or floccose, villous, pilose, strigose, hirsute, or hispid on one or both surfaces > 19
18 Leaf blades densely tomentose to floccose-tomentose or floccose on one or both surfaces > 35
19 Perianths glabrous > 20
19 Perianths pubescent > 25
20 Peduncles 0.1-0.5 at proximal nodes; involucres sessile distally; nw Nevada Eriogonum lemmonii
20 Peduncles (0.05-)0.2-3(-4) cm at least on proximal nodes; involucres usually pedunculate distally or, if sessile distally, not of nw Nevada; widespread > 21
21 Involucres narrowly turbinate to turbinate > 22
21 Involucres campanulate > 23
22 Peduncles 0.2-1.5 cm, slender to filiform, spreading to reflexed; leaf blades obovate to round-obovate; involucres 0.8-1.8 × 0.5-1.2 mm; perianths white to pinkish; flowering stems not fistulose; ec California, c and ne Nevada, c Utah Eriogonum esmeraldense
22 Peduncles (0.05-)0.1-0.25 cm, slender, deflexed; leaf blades subcordate; involucres 1.2-1.6 × 1-1.4 mm; perianths greenish white to reddish; flowering stems usually slightly fistulose; sc Nevada Eriogonum concinnum
23 Perianths pale yellow to yellow or yellowish red; involucres 2.5-3 × 2.5-3 mm; nw Nevada Eriogonum rubricaule
23 Perianths white, becoming pink to rose, rarely yellowish; involucres 0.6-1.5 × 0.8-1.5 mm; Arizona, w Colorado, nw Nebraska, nw New Mexico, sw South Dakota, Utah, and sw Wyoming > 24
24 Tepals monomorphic, oblong to narrowly ovate, not swollen proximally; flowers 1-2.5 mm; achenes 2-2.5 mm; nc Arizona, w Colorado, nw Nebraska, sw South Dakota, e Utah, sw Wyoming, and nw New Mexico Eriogonum gordonii
24 Tepals dimorphic, those of outer whorl pandurate with swollen auriculate bases; flowers 1-1.6 mm; achenes 1.3-1.6 mm; se Arizona, sw New Mexico Eriogonum capillare
25 Perianths densely short-villous or puberulent, white to pink or red, rarely pale yellow or yellow > 26
25 Perianths pilose or hirsute, usually yellow > 28
26 Plants glabrous and sparsely floccose; leaf blades oblong-oblanceolate to obovate, thinly floccose or glabrous; sw California Eriogonum ordii
26 Plants glabrous and sparsely glandular, at least on aerial flowering stems; leaf blades oblanceolate to obovate or spatulate, sparsely pilose and glandular or hirsute; s California > 27
27 Perianths white to reddish, rarely yellow; flowers 1.5-2.5 mm; leaf blades pilose; involucres 1.2-1.5 mm; sc California Eriogonum apiculatum
27 Perianths pink to red; flowers 0.5-0.9 mm; leaf blades hirsute; involucres 0.5-0.9 mm; s California Eriogonum parishii
28 Plants densely glandular throughout; perianths yellow to reddish or white to pinkish > 29
28 Plants glabrous or glandular only at base of stems or occasionally at nodes; perianths yellow to greenish yellow or reddish > 30
29 Perianths yellow to reddish; involucres 1.3-2 mm; peduncles ascending to erect; achenes 1.5-1.8 mm; s and ne Nevada, wc Utah Eriogonum howellianum
29 Perianths white to pinkish; involucres 0.8-1.2(-1.5) mm; peduncles deflexed or nearly so; achenes 1-1.3 mm; se California, s Nevada Eriogonum glandulosum
30 Flowering stems glandular proximally > 31
30 Flowering stems glabrous, hirsute, or villous proximally > 32
31 Inflorescence branches glandular at proximal nodes; involucral teeth (4-)5; plants (0.3-)0.5-3 dm; leaf blades oblong to round, (0.3-)0.5-1(-1.4) × (0.3-)0.5-1(-1.4) cm; achenes 1.5-1.8(-2) mm; Mojave Desert, se Inyo County, California, sw Nye County, Nevada Eriogonum contiguum
31 Inflorescences branches glabrous at proximal nodes; involucral teeth 4; plants (2-)4-18(-22) dm; leaf blades round to reniform, (0.5-)1-2.5(-4) × (0.5-)1-2(-3) cm; achenes 2-2.5 mm; Coast, Transverse, and Peninsular ranges and Mojave Desert of c and s California, Mojave Desert and s edge of Great Basin, s Nevada Eriogonum clavatum
32 Flowering stems and inflorescence branches grayish; plants first-year flowering perennials; e California to w Colorado and nw New Mexico Eriogonum inflatum
32 Flowering stems and inflorescence branches greenish or yellowish green; plants annuals; e California to sw Colorado and w Texas > 33
33 Flowering stems villous proximally; flowers 1.3-1.6 mm; Colorado Plateau, e Utah, nw Colorado, and sw Wyoming Eriogonum fusiforme
33 Flowering stems minutely hirsute to short-hispid or sometimes minutely glandular proximally; flowers 1-2.5 mm; not on Colorado Plateau > 34
34 Involucres 1-1.5(-1.8) mm; plants (2-)4-18(-22) dm; inflorescences 30-150(-170) cm; achenes 2-2.5 mm; Coast, Transverse and Peninsular ranges and Mojave Desert of c and s California, Mojave Desert and s edge of Great Basin, s Nevada Eriogonum clavatum
34 Involucres 0.7-1 mm; plants 1-4.5(-6) dm; inflorescences 5-30 cm; achenes 1-1.5 mm; s Mojave, Sonoran, and nw Chihuahuan deserts, Arizona, s California, s Nevada, s New Mexico, sw Utah Eriogonum trichopes
35 Outer tepals usually oblong, obovate, or orbiculate, cordate proximally > 36
35 Outer tepals oblong to oblanceolate or ovate, truncate to obtuse proximally > 41
36 Peduncles absent or erect, 0.1-5 mm > 37
36 Peduncles absent or deflexed, 0.1-15 mm > 38
37 Flowering stems 0.05-0.3 dm; plants 1-4 dm; inflorescences spreading and flat-topped; se Inyo County, California, nw Clark and sw Nye counties, Nevada Eriogonum bifurcatum
37 Flowering stems (0.5-)1-2 dm; plants (0.5-)3-6(-10) dm; inflorescences narrowly erect and strict; nw Arizona, s Nevada, sw Utah, and s California Eriogonum exaltatum
38 Flowering stems and inflorescence branches glandular; s and w edge of Great Basin, Mojave and nw Sonoran deserts, nw Arizona, se and ec California, wc and s Nevada, sw Utah Eriogonum brachypodum
38 Flowering stems and inflorescence branches glabrous; Great Basin, Mojave and Sonoran deserts, and Colorado Plateau; Arizona, e and s California, w Colorado, se Idaho, Nevada, w New Mexico, se Oregon, sw Wyoming, and Utah > 39
39 Involucres broadly campanulate to hemispheric; peduncles absent; perianths yellow to reddish yellow; Intermountain Region and Colorado Plateau, n Arizona, ec California, w Colorado, se Idaho, Nevada, nw New Mexico, se Oregon, sw Wyoming, and Utah. Eriogonum hookeri
39 Involucres narrowly turbinate or narrowly campanulate; peduncles absent or 0.1-15 mm; tepals as long or longer than wide; perianths white to pink; Arizona, s California, s Nevada, sw New Mexico, wc and s Utah > 40
40 Involucres 1.5-2.5 mm; inflorescences variously branched, not of many horizontal tiers; Arizona, se California, s Nevada, sw New Mexico, wc and s Utah. Eriogonum deflexum
40 Involucres 1-1.5 mm; inflorescences of many horizontal tiers ofbranches; e Inyo County, California, and sw Nye County, Nevada Eriogonum rixfordii
41 Perianths pustulose at least proximally > 42
41 Perianths not pustulose > 44
42 Flowering stems and inflorescence branches scabrellous; e Utah, nw and sw Colorado, nw New Mexico Eriogonum scabrellum
42 Flowering stems and inflorescence branches glabrous, except for proximal floccose stems in some; ne California, sw Idaho, nw Nevada se Oregon > 43
43 Peduncles curving, ascending, 1-5 cm; achenes 2-2.5 mm; ne Californianw Nevada, se Oregon Eriogonum collinum
43 Peduncles straight, erect, 0.1-0.5 cm; achenes 1.6-2 mm; sw Idaho, ncNevada, se Oregon Eriogonum salicornioides
44 Tepals monomorphic > 45
44 Tepals dimorphic or, if monomorphic, then pandurate to flatbellate or ovate, rarely oblong and perianth glandular-pubscent > 49
45 Involucres 1-2 mm, 5-toothed; Death Valley region, California > 46
45 Involucres 0.3-1.2 mm, 4-5-toothed; n Arizona, sw Colorado, e Nevada, nw New Mexico, s Utah > 47
46 Flowering stems and branches glabrous; peduncles erect; flowers1.5-1.8 mm Eriogonum hoffmannii
46 Flowering stems and branches glandular; peduncles deflexed; flowers 2-2.5 mm Eriogonum eremicola
47 Flowering stems and branches minutely viscid; perianths pale yellow to yellow, glabrous; flowers 1.3-2 mm; se Nevada, nw Arizona Eriogonum viscidulum
47 Flowering stems and branches glabrous or floccose to glabrescent at base of stems, not viscid; perianths white to rose, sometimes yellowish to red, glabrous or puberulent to sparsely hirsute; flowers 0.5-1.5(-2) mm; n Arizona, sw Colorado, nw New Mexico, s Utah > 48
48 Perianths yellowish to red, becoming pink to rose; flowers 0.5-1.5 mm; involucral teeth 4; inflorescences diffuse; ne Arizona, sw Colorado, nw New Mexico, se Utah Eriogonum wetherillii
48 Perianths white to rose, rarely yellowish; flowers 0.6-1.6(-2) mm; involucral teeth 5; inflorescences open to somewhat diffuse; n Arizona, nw New Mexico, s Utah Eriogonum subreniforme
49 Perianths glandular > 50
49 Perianths glabrous > 53
50 Perianths white to red, glandular-puberulent, with a tuft of long white hairs adaxially; outer tepals broadly pandurate or flabellate; Arizona, s California, sw New Mexico Eriogonum thurberi
50 Perianths yellow or, if becoming whitish, outer tepals saccate-dilated proximally, glandular or short-hispidulous, without a tuft of long white hairs adaxially; Arizona, s California, Nevada, se Oregon, w Utah, and Mexico > 51
51 Outer tepals cordate, becoming saccate-dilated proximally; perianths yellow in early anthesis, becoming white to rose; involucres 0.6-1.2 mm, glabrous; Arizona, se California, s Nevada, sw Utah Eriogonum thomasii
51 Outer tepals oblong-elliptic to obovate or ovate, not saccate-dilated proximally; perianths yellow; involucres 1-2 mm, glabrous or glandular; w Arizona, s and e California, w and s Nevada, se Oregon, w Utah > 52
52 Involucres glandular-puberulent; nw Arizona, se California, wc and s Nevada, se Oregon, and w Utah Eriogonum pusillum
52 Involucres glabrous; w Arizona, s California and s Nevada s to Mexico Eriogonum reniforme
53 Involucres narrowly turbinate; sw Idaho, c Nevada, se Oregon. Eriogonum watsonii
53 Involucres turbinate to campanulate; widespread w United States and Canada > 54
54 Peduncles deflexed; outer tepals oblong; ec California, Nevada Eriogonum deflexum
54 Peduncles cernuous, ascending, or erect; widespread w United States and Canada > 55
55 Outer tepals oblong to oval; peduncles cernuous, usually curved, glandular or infrequently glabrous; nw Arizona, ec California, se Oregon, w and ec Utah, and Nevada Eriogonum nutans
55 Outer tepals pandurate or flabellate; peduncles cernuous, ascending or erect, infrequently absent, glabrous; widespread w United States and Canada > 56
56 Outer tepals pandurate; peduncles absent or cernuous to ascending, (1-)2-25 mm; involucres 1-1.5 mm wide; widespread, sw Canada to w Nebraska, ec California, s Nevada, n Arizona, and n New Mexico Eriogonum cernuum
56 Outer tepals flabellate; peduncles erect, 3-15 mm; involucres 1.5-2.5 mm wide; se Arizona, New Mexico, w Texas Eriogonum rotundifolium