WILDFLOWERS OF NEW MEXICO

 
 

Even though it forms colonies, you can easily overlook of this prickly-leafed flower. The stiff stem protrudes 1–12 inches from the sand and the early spring flowers barely open. The leathery leaves turn brown by summer. Note the holly-like leaves.


FLOWERS: April. Pink to whitish, petal-like ray flowers, narrow, tipped with 3 points; disk flowers protrude on red and yellow columns; 4 rows of red-lined phyllaries surround the flower head.


LEAVES: Alternate, spine-toothed, holly-shaped, oval to triangular, blade 1/2–2 inches (10–50 mm) long, slightly folded.


HABITAT: Sandy, gravelly soils; desert scrub and grassland, mesas.


ELEVATION: 3,800–8,500 feet.


RANGE: AZ, NM, TX.


SIMILAR SPECIES: Wright's Desert Peony, Abronia wrightii, in southern NM, is 1–3 feet tall, branching, with 1–5 inch leaf blades.


NM COUNTIES: Widespread in NM in low- to mid-elevation, arid habitats.

DESERT  HOLLY, DWARF  DESERT  PEONY

ACOURTIA  NANA

Aster Family, Asteraceae

Perennial herb

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