The following Participating Institutions are custodians for this species in the CPC National Collection:
CPC National Office
The conservation of Yermo xanthocephalus is fully sponsored.
Jim Locklear contributed to this Plant Profile.
The Wind River Basin of central Wyoming is home to a remarkable number of rare plants, but none as rare as the desert yellowhead, a wildflower that was only discovered in 1990, and whose entire global distribution is limited to about 6 acres of cold desert habitat here. The genus name, Yermo, is a Spanish word meaning uninhabited land, an apt description of the remote badland setting where this plant occurs. This species is the only species in the Yermo genus. With clusters of bright yellow flowers and thick, leathery leaves, desert yellowhead is an oddly showy plant for such a harsh, barren landscape.
Distribution & Occurrence
Low slopes, rim margins, colluvial fans, and bottoms of deflation hollows, on poorly-developed soils derived from sandstones and clays of the Miocene-age Split Rock Formation. Occurs in cushion plant communities within more densely vegetated cold desert shrubland dominated by big sagebrush (Artemisia tridentata). Elevation 6700 ft.
|The entire global distribution is limited to about 6 acres of suitable habitat in the Beaver Rim area (Wind River Basin) of southeastern Fremont County, Wyoming. Population approximately 11,600 individuals (Fertig 2000).|
Conservation, Ecology & Research
Construction associated with oil and gas development.
Off-road vehicle damage.
Dorn, R.D. 1991. Yermo xanthocephalus (Asteraceae: Senecioneae): A New Genus and Species from Wyoming. Madroo; a West American journal of botany. 38, 3: 198-201.
Scott, R.; Hoster, B. 2000. On the Germination and Viability of Yermo xanthocephalus Akenes. Castilleja: The Newsletter of the Wyoming Native Plant Society. 19, 1: 4-6.
USFWS. 1998. Proposed threatened status for the plant Yermo xanthocephalus. Federal Register. 63, 245: 70745-70751.
USFWS. 1999. Listing Proposals. Endangered Species Bulletin. 24, 2: 26.
USFWS. 2002. Listing the Desert Yellowhead as Threatened. Federal Register. 67, 50: 11442-11449.