CPC National Collection Plant Profile

Sphaeromeria simplex

Photographer:
J. Locklear

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CPC National Collection Plant Profile

Sphaeromeria simplex


Family: 
Asteraceae  
Common Name: 
Laramie false sagebrush
Author: 
(A. Nels.) Heller
Growth Habit: 
Forb/herb
CPC Number: 
4071

Distribution
Protection
Conservation
References


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Sphaeromeria simplexenlarge
Photographer: J. Locklear
jlocklear1[at]unl.edu
Image Owner: Nebraska Statewide Arboretum

Sphaeromeria simplexenlarge
Photographer: J. Locklear
jlocklear1[at]unl.edu
Image Owner: Nebraska Statewide Arboretum


Sphaeromeria simplex is Not Sponsored
Primary custodian for this plant in the CPC National Collection of Endangered Plants is: 
Jim Locklear contributed to this Plant Profile.

 
Sphaeromeria simplex


The arid basins and plains of Wyoming are a tough place to live. Desert dryness couples with punishing winds and extremes of heat and cold to create an environment not unlike that found high in the mountains. It should not be surprising, then, to find similar plants in both places - dwarf plants that hunker down out of the elements. These diminutive, compact plants occur in Wyoming's basins and plains with an abundance matched in few other places in the world. Among them is the Laramie false sagebrush.

Distribution & Occurrence

State Range
  Wyoming
State Range of  Sphaeromeria simplex
Habitat
  Gentle slopes or rims of dry, rocky limestone-sandstone "pebble plains" in wind-scoured openings. Occurs in cushion plant communities within more densely vegetated stands of juniper (Juniperus osteosperma), limber pine (Pinus flexilis), big sagebrush (Artemisia tridentata), or mountain mahogany (Cercocarpus montanus). Elevation 7200-8760 ft.

Distribution
  Limited to southeastern Wyoming in the western foothills of the Laramie Range and Shirley Mountains, and the western edge of the Shirley Basin (Albany, Carbon, Converse, and Natrona counties).

Number Left
  Long thought to be limited to one population near Laramie. Now known from 11 occurrences in Wyoming, all of which have been observed or discovered since 1996. Probably close to 1 million individuals within these populations (Fertig 2000).

Protection

Global Rank:  
G2
 
4/10/1998
Guide to Global Ranks
Federal Status:  
SC
 
1/19/1996
Guide to Federal Status
Recovery Plan:  
No
 

State/Area Protection
  State/Area Rank Status Date  
  Wyoming S2 E9 4/9/1990  

Conservation, Ecology & Research

Ecological Relationships
  Unknown.

Threats
  One population near Laramie is located on the edge of an active limestone quarry. Some BLM populations are along roadsides that are potentially impacted by compaction from vehicles, new road and trail development, and competition from exotic plants (Fertig 2000). Most other populations occur in remote areas with minimal human impact.

Current Research Summary
  None known.

Current Management Summary
 

Research Management Needs
 

Ex Situ Needs
 

References

Books (Single Authors)

Dorn, R.D. 1992. Vascular Plants of Wyoming. Cheyenne, WY: Mountain West Publishing.

Electronic Sources

Fertig, W. (2000). State Species Abstracts. Wyoming Natural Diversity Database. http://uwadmnweb.uwyo.edu/wyndd/Plants/plant_species.htm. Accessed: 2002.

Journal Articles

Carsey, K. 1988. Workshop Summary Reports: Rare Plants in Wyoming?. Aquilegia. 12, 3: 4.

Dorn, R.D. 1999. Our Most Endangered Plants Have Yet to be Discovered. Castilleja: The Newsletter of the Wyoming Native Plant Society. 18, 4: 6-7.

Fertig, W. 2000. Field Trip Reports: Shirley Basin/Shirley Mountains. Castilleja (Wyoming Native Plant Society). 19, 3: 2,3.

Holmgren, A.H.; Schulz, L.M.; Lowrey, T.K. 1976. Sphaeromeria, a genus closer to Artemisia than to Tanacetum (Asteraceae: Anthemideae). Brittonia. 28: 252-262.

USFWS. 1983. Regional Updates--Region 6. Endangered Species Technical Bulletin. 8, 3: 9.

Reports

Dorn, R.D. 1980. Illustrated guide to special interest vascular plants of Wyoming. Cheyenne, Wyoming: U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service and Bur. Land Management. p.67.

Fertig, W. 1993. Field survey for Cryptantha subcapitata, Physaria eburniflora, and Sphaeromeria simplex on Bureau of Land Management lands in central Wyoming. Laramie: Casper District, Bur. Land Management by the Wyoming Natural Diversity Database. p.116.

Fertig, W.; Refsdal, C.; Whipple, J. 1994. Wyoming rare plant field guide. Cheyenne, Wyoming: Wyoming Rare Plant Technical Committee.

Theses

Taylor, A.R. 2000. The vascular flora of the Upper North Platte River drainage, Wyoming. [Master's thesis]: University of Wyoming. Laramie, WY.


  This profile was updated on 3/4/2010
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