I"ve been an amateur (and I mean that in every sense of the word) "botanist" since circa 1997 with a special interest in California native plants. An incidental yet corollary passion of mine is birding and, like many fellow birders, I keep a Life List of all the bird species that I've observed in my lifetime, so I thought, why not also create a life list for my observations of plants in the field? I try my best to make proper IDs, but I always welcome corrections from those who know better.
Stem: ascending to erect, green to brown, spreading-bristly, branches 0--many.
Leaf: spreading, green, coarse-hairy to bristly.
Flower: calyx lobes 5, +- equal, not fused above base; corolla 7--11 mm, tube exserted, tube 10-veined near base, limb 4--10 mm diam, +- orange, generally with 5 dark spots; stamens attached above middle of tube, anthers generally appressed to stigma; style to throat.
Fruit: 2--3.5 mm, +- sharp-tubercled, occasionally ridged.
Ecology: Open, generally disturbed areas;
Elevation: < 1750(2350) m.
Bioregional Distribution: CA (uncommon D);
Distribution Outside California: to British Columbia, western Montana, Utah, western Texas, Baja California.
Flowering Time: Mar--Jun
Note: Homostylous. Perhaps better treated as part of Amsinckia menziesii. Hybridizes with Amsinckia lycopsoides, Amsinckia retrorsa; see note under Amsinckia eastwoodiae.
Synonyms: Amsinckia intermedia var. echinata (A. Gray) Wiggins; Amsinckia menziesii (Lehm.) A. Nelson & J.F. Macbr. var. intermedia (Fisch. & C.A. Mey.) Ganders, ined.
Unabridged Note: Self-pollinated. Highly variable, with 100+ named, mostly indistinct variants, some of which may grow together and remain distinct but intergrade over their ranges.
eFlora Treatment Author: Ronald B. Kelley & Fred R. Ganders
Stem: simple or freely branched, branching occasionally basal in desert forms, +- hairy.
Leaf: 0.8--7 cm, linear to oblanceolate, entire, +- hairy, +- fleshy in coastal forms.
Inflorescence: involucre 5--10 mm, bell-shaped or hemispheric; phyllaries 4--13, free, hairy, persistent or falling with fruits; receptacle conic, rough, glabrous.
Ray Flower: 6--13; corolla dark red in alkali solution; ray 5--10 mm.
Disk Flower: generally many; anther tip triangular; style tips +- triangular.
Fruit: < 3 mm, linear to +- club-shaped, glabrous or hairy; pappus of (2)4(6) opaque, white, lance-ovate scales, or 0.
Ecology: Abundant, many habitats;
Elevation: < 1500 m.
Bioregional Distribution: CA-FP (exc NCoRH, CaRH, SNH), w DMoj;
Distribution Outside California: central Arizona, northwestern Baja California.
Note: Most commonly found Lasthenia. Distinguished from Lasthenia californica subsp. californica by its pappus (when present) and wider range, extending into southern California. Highly variable; needs further study.
eFlora Treatment Author: Raymund Chan & Robert Ornduff
Stem: (1)3--10+, generally branched at and above base, erect to ascending, glabrous, +- glaucous.
Leaf: basal not fleshy, generally oblong-oblanceolate, remotely deeply lobed with narrow, wide-spreading segments to 3(4) cm, glabrous; proximal oblanceolate to obovate, with 3--6 pairs of well-spaced teeth or long narrow lobes; distal reduced, +- lobed.
Inflorescence: heads 1--few in cyme-like clusters, generally +- long-peduncled; involucre 9--17 mm; outer phyllaries generally 1/2 inner, lanceolate, glabrous or short white-hairy; receptacle densely bristly.
Flower: corolla 15--23 mm, generally pale yellow (white), ligules of outermost flowers generally exserted 9--13 mm.
Fruit: 2--3.3 mm; outer pappus of irregular teeth, bristles 1--5.
Ecology: Coarse soils in open areas or among shrubs in desert areas, foothill woodland;
Stem: generally 1--12; branches generally proximal.
Leaf: basal, withering, and +- cauline, 1--7(10) cm; largest blades linear, cylindric, entire, or +- elliptic, flat, 1-pinnately lobed, +- fleshy, nonglandular; lobes generally 1--2(5) pairs, tips +- cylindric.
Inflorescence: heads radiant, generally 1--5 per stem; peduncle distally generally glandular-hairy, or +- glabrous in fruit; involucre +- obconic to hemispheric; longest phyllaries 8--10(12) mm, outer +- glabrous in fruit, tip erect, stiff, acute.
Flower: corolla white to +- pink, inner 5--8 mm, outer bilateral, spreading, > inner.
Fruit: (3)6--8 mm; inner fruit pappus of 4 scales in 1 series, longest 6--8.5 mm, tips visible among buds.
Ecology: Loose sand or gravel, often growing through shrubs;
Elevation: -10--1600(2200) m.
Bioregional Distribution: s SNF, Teh, s SnJV, SCoRI, n&e edges SW (exc ChI), s SNE (exc W&I), D;
Distribution Outside California: to southwestern Utah, western Arizona, northern Baja California.
Flowering Time: Feb--May
Unabridged Note: Prominent spring wildflower in lower deserts; eaten by desert tortoises.