CPC National Collection Plant Profile

Lygodesmia doloresensis

Photographer:
Carol Dawson

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CPC National Collection Plant Profile

Lygodesmia doloresensis


Family: 
Asteraceae  
Common Names: 
Dolores River skeleton plant, Dolores River skeleton-plant, Dolores skeleton plant
Author: 
S. Tomb
Growth Habit: 
Forb/herb
CPC Number: 
2744

Distribution
Protection
Conservation
References


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Lygodesmia doloresensisenlarge
Photographer: Carol Dawson
Carol_Dawson[at]blm.gov
Image Owner: Denver Botanic Gardens


Lygodesmia doloresensis is Not Sponsored
Primary custodian for this plant in the CPC National Collection of Endangered Plants is: 
Michelle DePrenger-Levin contributed to this Plant Profile.

 
Lygodesmia doloresensis


Lygodesmia doloresensis was first collected in 1947 by H.D. Harrington of Colorado State University. Spencer Tomb then reexamined the plant as part of his doctoral research on Lygodesmia and discovered that it was an unrecognized species. He named it Lygodesmia doloresensis in 1980.

On June mornings, this foot-tall Aster will produce numerous rose-colored flowers surrounded by wispy leaves. These plants are often only found where shrubs or clumps of prickly pear cactus protect them from grazing cattle. (Von Bargen 1997)

Distribution & Occurrence

State Range
  Colorado
Utah
State Range of  Lygodesmia doloresensis
Habitat
  This species is found in mixed juniper-desert shrub and juniper-grassland communities on alluvial soils at elevations of 4,400 to 4,800 ft. (Atwood 1991). Soils are derived from sandstone outcrops associated with the undivided lower portion of the Cutler Group. (NatureServe 2001).

This species is associated with Leucelene ericoides, Gutierregia sarothrace, Aristida pururea, Hilaria jamesis, Chrysothamnus nauseosus, Bromus tectorum, Plantago sp., Opuntia sp., Coleogycle ramossima, Atriplex sp. (Atwood 1991)

Distribution
  This species is known from a 16 km stretch of the Dolores River Canyon in Mesa County, Colorado and 8 km stretch of the Colorado River Canyon in Grand County, Utah. However, the Dolores Canyon, where most of the known plants occur, is heavily grazed by cattle. Lygodesmia doloresensis is thus found only in sites that are physically inaccessible to cattle. (NatureServe 2001).

Number Left
  There are three known sites (Von Bargen 1997).

Protection

Global Rank:  
G1G2
 
1/6/2006
Guide to Global Ranks
Federal Status:  
RT
 
1/19/1996
Guide to Federal Status
Recovery Plan:  
No
 

State/Area Protection
  State/Area Rank Status Date  
  Colorado S1 5/1/1999  

Conservation, Ecology & Research

Ecological Relationships
  Ecological relationships are unknown.

Threats
  Threats include livestock grazing (Atwood 1991).

Current Research Summary
  None known.

Current Management Summary
  There is no formal management plan.

Research Management Needs
  Research needs include understanding reproductive biology and ecology, habitat requirement, relationships with other species and population dynamics.

Ex Situ Needs
  Seed collection and storage.

References

Books (Single Authors)

Von Bargen, E.; Coles, J.; Denham, M.; Jennings, W.; Martin, S.C.; Richards, V.; Steinkamp, M. 1997. Rare Plants of Colorado. Helena, Montana: Falcon Press. Prepared by the Colorado Native Plant Society.

Electronic Sources

NatureServe. (2008). NatureServe Explorer: An online encyclopedia of life [web application]. [Internet].Version 7.0. NatureServe, Arlington, Virginia. http://www.natureserve.org/explorer. Accessed: (June 17, 2008).

Journal Articles

Sotham, M. 1997. Nurturing Native Plants. Endangered Species Bulletin. 22, 2: 4-6.

Reports

Atwood, D.N.; Holland, J; Bolander, R; Franklin, B.; House, D.E.; Armstrong, L.A.; Thorne, K; England, L. 1991. Utah Threatened, Endangered and Sensitive Plant Guide. U.S. Forest Service Intermountain Region, National Park Service, Bureau of Land Management, Utah Natural Heritage Program, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Environmental Protection Agency, Navajo Nation and Skull Valley Goshute Tribe.


  This profile was updated on 3/4/2010
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