|Avon Park harebells, Avon Park rabbit-bells, Avon Park rattlebox|
|Delaney & Wunderlin|
|Dorothy M. Brazis|
The following Participating Institutions are custodians for this species in the CPC National Collection:
Bok Tower Gardens
Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden
The conservation of Crotalaria avonensis is fully sponsored.
Dorothy M. Brazis contributed to this Plant Profile.
This spreading, perennial herb was named in 1989 and listed as endangered in 1993. It is a bushy plant that hugs the ground with clusters of fuzzy, grayish leaves and short stems bearing small yellow flowers at the tips. Each plant can have one to three rather hairy, flowering stems that will grow 2 to 10 cm tall. The simple oval leaves of this plant are 8 to 19 mm long, somewhat succulent, and coated with white or yellowish-white hairs. Flowers are typical pea flowers with an upright banner petal, 2 wings, and a keel petal, and are yellow with a few purple lines on the upright petal. These flowers can be found from March until June. Tan, gray, or maroon inflated seed pods appear after this, each containing up to 18 seeds. (USFWS 1999)
Distribution & Occurrence
Occurs on the Lake Wales Ridge in full sun on patches of bare white sand or in association with Cladionia lichens or in partial shade of other plants. This species is found along trails, open edges or in previously disturbed road beds. Crotolaria is found on Archbold and Satellite sands. It is dependent on bare patches of sand to become established. (USFWS 1999)
|Several hundred individuals in 2 populations known from only 3 sites. Only two of the populations are protected and occur in the Lake Wales Ridge Ecosystem Carl Project Site (Saddle Blanket Lakes and Carter Creek) and Avon Park Lakes in Highlands and Polk Counties (FNAI 2001).|
Conservation, Ecology & Research
Information on pollinators, seed dispersers, and seed viability is unknown for this species.
This plant has been successfully propagated in ex situ collections, and Historic Bok Tower Gardens maintains individuals of this species as a part of the National Collection.
Bernadette Plair and Valerie Pence (Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical Garden) are micropropagating this species to increase their numbers for research and possible reintroduction efforts (Plair and Pence 2000)
Control non-native invasive plant species.
Purchase privately-held lands where this species occurs.
Research is needed on demographic processes, pollinators, seed dispersers and seed viability.
Research propagation and seed germination methods.
Pace-Aldana, B.; Gordon, D.R.; Slapcinsky, J. 2000. Monitoring of tortoise bells (Crotalaria avonensis) at Saddleblanket Lakes Preserve. In: Gordon, D.R.; Slapcinsky, J.L., editors. Annual Research Report: A Compilation of Research Conducted or Supported