Dudleya cymosa ssp. ovatifolia

Common Names:
Santa Monica Mountains Dudleya
Growth Habit:
CPC Number:
Profile Contributors:
Dieter Wilken
Fully Sponsored

Reference Links

ITIS - Tropicos - USDA Plants - Fish & WildLife

Participating Institutions

The following Participating Institutions are custodians for this species in the CPC National Collection:
Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden

The conservation of Dudleya cymosa ssp. ovatifolia is fully sponsored.
Dieter Wilken contributed to this Plant Profile.


Santa Monica Mountains Dudleya is a succulent perennial, with a basal rosette of 6-10 evergreen leaves, and a short stem bearing bright yellow flowers in late May (Bartel 1993; Nakai 1987; Thomson 1993). Although first described in 1903, it was not treated in identification manuals until the late 1950s (Munz 1959). Its narrow distribution is shared in part with two other rare Dudleya species (marcescent Dudleya, Veritys live-forever) that occur on sedimentary and volcanic rocks of the western Santa Monica Mountains in southern California. However, it apparently also occurs in a few isolated occurrences in the Santa Ana Mountains of Orange County. Variation in branching, leaf shape, and leaf color led Kei Nakai, a Dudleya specialist, to recognize subsp. agourensis (Agoura Hills Dudleya) as distinct from subsp. ovatifolia (Nakai 1987). The two subspecies occur in slightly different habitats, separated from each other by the main ridge of the Santa Monica Mountains. The Agoura Hills Dudleya generally occurs on relatively dry, exposed outcrops of volcanic breccia, whereas subsp. ovatifolia in the narrow sense occurs on shaded sites and conglomerate substrates. The two subspecies are listed separately by the California Department of Fish and Game. Both subspecies, however, are treated by the US Fish and Wildlife Service as a single entity for conservation purposes (US Fish and Wildlife Service 1999).

Distribution & Occurrence


Conservation, Ecology & Research