WILDFLOWERS OF NEW MEXICO

 

Erect and reaching 3–10-feet tall, the branching stems have no spines or bristles and leaves with maple-like lobes. Note the crowded flower clusters with cup-shaped, not tubular, whitish blooms, and black, glandular-hairy berries.


FLOWERS: May–June. Crowded clusters with 7–25 whitish to greenish flowers, cup-shaped with green, yellow, or clear short glandular hairs; 5 petal-like sepals with 5 smaller interior petals. Fruit a round, black berry 1/2–1 1/2-inches diameter (12–38 mm) with numerous glandular hairs.


LEAVES: Alternate or whorl-like on short branchlets, with long stems (petioles). Blade 1 1/2–3 1/2-inches long and wide (3.8–7.5 cm), with 5 pointed lobes, margins with teeth, surfaces with clear glands (use lens).


HABITAT: Gravelly loam soils, forest openings, slopes, roadsides; pine-Douglas fir, aspen, spruce-fir forests.


ELEVATION: 8,700–12,000 feet.


RANGE: AZ, CO, ID, NM, OR, UT, WA.


SIMILAR SPECIES: 12 species of Ribes in NM, 8 may have no stem spines or bristles, 3 of those with cup-shaped, not tubular, flowers. Reliable ID relies on flowers and fruit. Trailing Black Current, R. laxiflorum, in no. NM mountains, also has spineless stems, cup-shaped flowers, and hairy fruit, but the flowers are pink and the stems sprawling.


NM COUNTIES: Widespread in NM mountains a mid- to high-elevation habitats: Bernalillo, Catron, Cibola, Colfax, Grant, Lincoln, Los Alamos, Mora, Otero, Rio Arriba, San Juan, San Miguel, Sandoval, Santa Fe, Socorro, Taos, Torrance, Union.

WOLF’S  CURRENT

RIBES  WOLFII

Gooseberry or Current Family, Grossulariaceae

Perennial, deciduous shrub

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Flowers have 5 petal-like sepals (lower arrow) that surround 5 small inner petals (upper arrow).

Leaves are large with maple-like lobes with teeth.

Leaves turn hues of yellow and red in the fall.

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