CPC National Collection Plant Profile

Castilleja elongata

Photographer:
Kathy Rice

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CPC National Collection Plant Profile

Castilleja elongata


Family: 
Scrophulariaceae  
Common Names: 
Chisos paintbrush, tall Indian-paintbrush
Author: 
Pennell
Growth Habit: 
Subshrub, Forb/herb
CPC Number: 
812

Distribution
Protection
Conservation
References


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Castilleja elongataenlarge
Photographer: Kathy Rice

Castilleja elongataenlarge
Photographer: Kathy Rice


Castilleja elongata is Not Sponsored
Primary custodian for this plant in the CPC National Collection of Endangered Plants is: 
Kathleen C. Rice contributed to this Plant Profile.

 
Castilleja elongata


The Chisos paintbrush is known only from the Chisos Mountains in Big Bend National Park, Texas (USFWS 1998). It is reportedly hemiparisitic, obtaining water and nutrients from host plants by forming haustorial connections with the roots of nearby grasses and other plants (Heckard 1962, Mills and Kummerow 1982, Baird and Riopel 1985, Crank 1990, Matthies 1997). It is found among Quercus incana chaparral near a hiking trail in the Chisos Mountains (USFWS 1998). C. elongata may be adapted to fire, as plants were observed growing in recently burned areas.

C. elongata plants are herbaceous perennials with linear gray-green leaves. Floral bracts and calyces are a bright red-orange in color, making an extremely attractive display when plants are blooming. Seeds are produced by both self- and cross-pollination and are borne in capsules with small holes at the top. In 1992, the species was taxonomically submerged in the far more widespread C. integra (Nesom, G.L., A new species of Castilleja (Scrophulariaceae) from south central Texas, with comments on other Texas taxa. Phytologia 72:3).

Distribution & Occurrence

State Range
  Texas
State Range of  Castilleja elongata
Habitat
  The habitat is located on the west side of the Chisos mountains in rocky, grassy areas in oak chaparral. Historic fire suppression may play a role in limiting reproduction of this taxon, as competing scrub oak becomes increasingly thicker in terms of percent canopy cover (Moir 1982).

Distribution
  Plants are distributed in several small patches with in a relatively limited area comprising the larger population which is localized in the Chisos mountains.

Number Left
  One population is known from Big Bend National Park, with two sub-populations, all of which are located within an area having a radius of about two miles. Numbers of individuals are generally under 100.

Protection

Global Rank:  
G4G5T4T5
 
8/9/2002
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  
  Texas S2 4/26/1991  

Conservation, Ecology & Research

Ecological Relationships
  Plants are hemi-parasitic, with possible host plants including Bouteloua curtipendula, Cercocarpus montanus, Ceaonothus greggii, and Quercus spp. (Heckard 1962, Mills and Kummerow 1982, Baird and Riopel 1985, Crank 1990, Matthies 1997). Plants are not visible through much of the year, blending in with associated vegetation, and are readily apparent only when in flower or fruit.

Threats
  Threats to this taxon are all related to the impact of human accessibility to the remote areas of the Chisos. Construction of a hiking trail through the most dense portion of the Castilleja elongata population has brought about damage due to trampling and picking of flowers (USFWS 1998). A retaining wall built to stabilize the trail has damaged some of the habitat.

Current Research Summary
 

Current Management Summary
  Plants are being annually attended to in some manner. Plants have been surveyed and/or seeds have been collected almost every year since 1994.

Research Management Needs
  Further investigation into taxonomic distinctness is needed. Exploration into the impact of fire on this taxon would be useful
Moir 1980, 1982, 1987).

Ex Situ Needs
  A sufficient number of seeds are banked at Desert Botanical Garden to be able to conduct an effective augmentation if it becomes necessary. Periodic germination testing and production of seeds in cultivation produces sufficient seed to maintain seedbank integrity for this species.

References

Electronic Sources

(2000). Center for Plant Conservation's National Living Collection--Profiles. Desert Botanical Garden. http://www.dbg.org/Collections/cpc.html. Accessed: 2002.

(2002). Botany: Investigator's Annual Reports. The National Park Service: Big Bend National Park. http://www.nps.gov/bibe/iar/botany.htm. Accessed: 2002.

Journal Articles

Baird, W.V.; Riopel, J.L. 1985. Surface characteristics of root and haustorial hairs of parasitic Scrophulariaceae. Botanical Gazette. 146, 1: 63-69.

Crank, E. 1990. Castilleja growth with and without host species. Journal of the National Wildflower Research Center.

Heckard, L.R. 1962. Root parasitism in Castilleja. Botanical Gazette. 124: 21-29.

Lockwood, M. 1992. Seed coat morphology of Castilleja from Texas. Texas Journal of Science. 44, 2: 223-232.

Matthies, D. 1997. Parasite-host interactions in Castilleja and Orthocarpus. Canadian Journal of Botany. 78: 1252-1260.

Mills, J.N.; Kummerow, J.J. 1982. Root Parasitism in Indian Paintbrush. Fremontia. 16, 3: 12-13.

Moir, W.H. 1982. A fire history of the high Chisos, Big Bend National Park, Texas. Southwestern Naturalist. 27: 87-98.

Nesom, G.L. 1992. A new species of Castilleja scrophulariaceae from southcentral Texas with commons on other Texas taxa. Phytologia. 72, 3: 209-230.

USFWS. 1998. Notice of Reclassification of Four Candidate Taxa: Pediocactus paradinei (Kaibab Plains Cactus), Castilleja elongata (Tall Paintbrush), Dalea tentaculoides (Gentry’s Indigobush), and Astragalus oophorus var. clokeyanus (Clokey’s Eggvetch). Federal Register. 63, 63

Reports

1998. Conservation Agreement for Castilleja elongata (Tall Paintbrush) and Festuca ligulata (Guadalupe Fescue). Signed between Big Bend National Park and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Unpublished. U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Austin Ecological Services Field Office.

Hodgson, W.; Ecker, L.S. 1990. Research proposal for Castilleja elongata, Festuca ligulata, and Agave glomuliflora in Big Bend National Park. Letter to M. Fleming, Big Bend National Park, Texas.

Howell, D.J. 1986. Castilleja elongata Pennel Status Report (Contracts #3_20181-0670-84 and 20181-0319-5). Albuquerque, New Mexico: Prepared for USDI Fish and Wildlife Service. p.12.

Moir, W.H. 1980. Forest and woodland vegetation monitoring, Chisos Mountains, Big Bend National Park, Texas - baseline 1978. unpublished report to National Park Service, BIBE. p.51p. + photos + maps.

Moir, W.H. 1997. Evaluation of Population and Habitat Status and Need for Active Management to benefit Castilleja elongata (Tall Paintbrush) and Festuca ligulata (Guadalupe Fescue) in Big Bend National Park.


  This profile was updated on 3/4/2010
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