CPC Plant Profile: Cuyamaca Larkspur
Search / Plant Profile / Delphinium hesperium ssp. cuyamacae
Plant Profile

Cuyamaca Larkspur (Delphinium hesperium ssp. cuyamacae)

This shows a flowering plant in situ. Photo Credit: Walter Wisura
Description
  • Global Rank: T2 - Imperiled
  • Legal Status: N/A
  • Family: Ranunculaceae
  • State: CA
  • Nature Serve ID: 146337
  • Date Inducted in National Collection: 02/10/1987

The Cuyamaca larkspur is an herbaceous perennial in the buttercup family, and has leafy stems that bear dense blue-violet blooms. This species is found in two counties in California, and appears to be stable in the wild, due in large part to the establishment of the Cuyamaca Meadows Natural Preserve in 1990 by the California Department of Parks and Recreation. The creation of this preserve not only protected the Cuyamaca larkspur, but also its habitat, which is shared with a number of other endangered plant species, including the endangered Cuyamaca Lake downingia (Downingia concolor var. brevior), another species in the Center for Plant Conservation's National Collection. Further protection for this habitat comes from a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Helix Water District, Lake Cuyamaca Recreation and Park district, the California Department of Parks and Recreation, and the U.S. Forest Service. This MOU identifies particular actions for each of the signatory land managers to preserve and protect the endangered species and the habitat they depend upon. (CDFG 2002)

Participating Institutions
Updates
  • 09/01/2020
  • Orthodox Seed Banking

Based on an September 2020 extract of the California Plant Rescue Database, San Diego Zoo Global holds 2 accessions of Delphinium hesperium subsp. cuyamacae in orthodox seed collection. There are as many as 71284 seeds of this species in their collection - although some may have been used for curation testing or sent to back up.

  • 09/01/2020
  • Orthodox Seed Banking

Based on an September 2020 extract of the California Plant Rescue Database, California Botanic Garden holds 1 accessions of Delphinium hesperium subsp. cuyamacae in orthodox seed collection. There are as many as 3175 seeds of this species in their collection - although some may have been used for curation testing or sent to back up.

  • 08/05/2020
  • Seed Collection

Based on an August 2020 extract of the California Plant Rescue Database, San Diego Zoo Global has collected 2 seed accessions of Delphinium hesperium subsp. cuyamacae from 2 plant occurrences listed in the California Natural Diversity Database. These collections together emcompass 247 maternal plants

  • 08/05/2020
  • Seed Collection

Based on an August 2020 extract of the California Plant Rescue Database, California Botanic Garden has collected 1 seed accessions of Delphinium hesperium subsp. cuyamacae from 1 plant occurrences listed in the California Natural Diversity Database. These collections together emcompass an unknown number of maternal plants

Nature Serve Biotics
  • 05/02/2017

Endemic to California, Delphinium hesperium ssp. cuyamaceae occurs in Riverside and San Diego Counties. Threats include development, grazing, logging, and recreational activities.

  • 01/01/2010

Cattle grazing Highway maintenance activities Recreational and trail development (CDFG 2002)

  • 01/01/2010

Twenty occurrences are known, seventy percent of which are found within Cuyamaca Rancho State Park. (CDFG 2002)

  • 01/01/2010

None known.

  • 01/01/2010

Cuyamaca Meadows Natural Preserve was established in 1990 by the California Department of Parks and Recreation to protect this and other endangered species in the area. Further protection for this habitat comes from a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Helix Water District, Lake Cuyamaca Recreation and Park district, the California Department of Parks and Recreation, and the U.S. Forest Service, which calls for signatory land managers to preserve and protect the endangered species and the habitat they depend upon. (CDFG 2002)

  • 01/01/2010

The permanent removal of cattle grazing from Cuyamaca Lake. Studies into the basic biology and ecology of this species would benefit efforts to conserve it.

  • 01/01/2010

Maintain a genetically representative seed bank.

MORE

Be the first to post an update!

Photos
Nomenclature
Taxon Delphinium hesperium ssp. cuyamacae
Authority (Abrams) Lewis & Epling
Family Ranunculaceae
CPC Number 1377
ITIS 18469
USDA DEHEC
Common Names Cuyamaca larkspur | foothill larkspur
Associated Scientific Names Delphinium hesperium ssp. cuyamacae | Delphinium cuyamacae | Delphinium hesperium var. cuyamacae
Distribution Found from the San Jacinto Mountains (Riverside County), south into eastern San Diego County, where known locations include Cuyamaca Lake, Laguna Mountain Recreational Area, and Palomar Mountain. (KEA
State Rank
State State Rank
California S2
Habitat

Relatively densely vegetated Montane Meadow with a dominant presence of Muhlenbergia rigens is the habitat utilized by the Cuyamaca Larkspur south of Cuyamaca Lake. This locale is considerably more mesic than the habitat typically occupied by any other larkspurs in the region. The soils here are mapped as Holland stony fine sandy loam. (Reiser 1994)

Ecological Relationships

Unknown.

Pollinators
Common Name Name in Text Association Type Source InteractionID

Donate to CPC to Save this Species

Fall fundraising drive has begun! We're looking for 2,500 people to protect our planet. With you by our side, we will build a future where people live in harmony with nature. Come help and become a CPC donor today.

Donate Today