WILDFLOWERS OF NEW MEXICO

 
 

In spring and early summer these showy flowers pop up from shaded forest floors with 6–18-inch tall stems topped with rounded clusters of pinkish-white flowers. Note the 1–2 pairs of widely-spaced, opposite stem leaves with slender, pointed lobes.


FLOWERS: April–July. Dense, spherical clusters on short, radiating branches at the stem apex with pinkish-white, funnel-shaped flowers; floral tube 3/8–5/8-inch long (10–15 mm), throat hairy, with 5 spreading oval lobes; style and 3 stamens extend beyond throat. A whorl of leaf-like bracts grows just below the bloom cluster.


LEAVES: Basal and opposite on stem. Basal leaves on long stems (petioles), blades oval to elliptic, 2-inches long (5 cm), often with 1–3 pairs of smaller basal lobes along the midrib. Stem leaves similar, opposite, clasping; divided into lance-shaped lobes to 2 1/2-inches long (6.3 cm); stem has only 1-2 pairs of leaves.


HABITAT: Moist gravel loam soils; pinyon-juniper, ponderosa-Douglas fir, spruce-fir forests.


ELEVATION: 6,300–10,500 feet.


RANGE: AZ, CO, NM.


SIMILAR SPECIES: Sharpleaf Valerian, V. acutiloba, in much the same range and habitat, has smaller flowers with flora tubes to 1/4-inch long (6 mm), and oval to spatula-shaped basal leaves.


NM COUNTIES: Statewide in mid- to high-elevation moist, mountain habitats: Bernalillo, Catron, Cibola, Colfax, Dona Ana, Grant, Hidalgo, Lincoln, Los Alamos, Luna, McKinley, Mora, Otero, San Miguel, Sandoval, Santa Fe, Sierra, Socorro, Taos, Torrance, Valencia.

ARIZONA  VALERIAN

VALERIANA   ARIZONICA

Honeysuckle Family, Caprifoliaceae (formerly in Valerianaceae)

Perennial herb

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Basal leaves are elliptic to rounded with long stems (petioles). The stem has 1-2 pairs of clasping leaves with lance-shaped lobes (arrow).

Leaf-like bracts grow below the flower clusters (arrow).

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