CPC Plant Profile: Burke's Draba
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Plant Profile

Burke's Draba (Draba burkei)

Description
  • Global Rank: T2 - Imperiled
  • Legal Status: N/A
  • Family: Brassicaceae
  • State: UT
  • Nature Serve ID: 146462
  • Date Inducted in National Collection:

Burkes draba (Draba burkei) is a small leafed, small flowered perennial that lives high in the Uinta Mountains in northeastern Utah. Burkes draba was only recently described as a separate species from Draba maguirei var. burkei (Windham 1998). Changing this taxon to a full species from a variety has great conservation implications. While Burkes draba was known as a variety of Draba maguirei it was considered a rare species. As a species in itself, it is an extremely rare plant. There is a distance of 11.5 km between the closest known populations of Draba maguirei and Draba burkei. Along with the differences morphologically and genetically there is enough evidence to classify this plant as a separate species. It shares certain characteristics with other related Draba species like yellow flowers borne on leafless stems and oblong, toothed leaves in basal rosettes. However, Burkes draba does not hybridize with Draba maguirei and they rarely share the same substrate preferences. Burkes draba is also closely allied with Draba globosa. Nonetheless, there is a cutoff at an elevation of 3000 meters where Burkes draba ends and Draba globosa begins (Windham 1998). Utah hosted the 2002 winter Olympics in the Uinta Mountain range. One Draba burkei population was found directly in the path of the proposed ski run for the Mens downhill event. To create a safe run, the construction cut into a portion of this, the largest, population of Burkes draba (Johnson 2001). These plants were removed and sent to Denver Botanic Gardens where they can now be viewed and studied by the public. Three plants are growing in the naturalistic gardens of Denver Botanic Gardens and one plant is being kept in the greenhouse.

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Updates
  • 09/09/2020
  • Living Collection

Utah hosted the 2002 winter Olympics in the Uinta Mountain range. One Draba burkei population was found directly in the path of the proposed ski run for the Mens downhill event. To create a safe run, the construction cut into a portion of this, the largest, population of Burkes draba (Johnson 2001). These plants were removed and sent to Denver Botanic Gardens where they can now be viewed and studied by the public. Three plants are growing in the naturalistic gardens of Denver Botanic Gardens and one plant is being kept in the greenhouse.

  • 09/09/2020
  • Propagation Research

Seed germination experiments completed by Denver Botanic Gardens in 2001. Vegetative propagation of Draba burkei stored at Denver Botanic Gardens is currently being attempted.

  • 09/09/2020
  • Genetic Research

Taxonomic study of Draba maguirei and allied taxa by Dr. Michael D. Windham and Mark Beilstein (Windham 1998).

  • 09/09/2020
  • Seed Collection

Seed has been stored in the National Center for Genetic Resources Preservation in Fort Collins, Colorado. The goal of the NCGRP is to preserve a collection of genetic resources to secure the biological diversity of these rare species in case of an unfortunate, catastrophic event. Since this species is so newly separated into a good species, no management plan has been developed.

  • 09/09/2020
  • Orthodox Seed Banking

Seed has been stored in the National Center for Genetic Resources Preservation in Fort Collins, Colorado. The goal of the NCGRP is to preserve a collection of genetic resources to secure the biological diversity of these rare species in case of an unfortunate, catastrophic event. Since this species is so newly separated into a good species, no management plan has been developed.

Nature Serve Biotics
  • 05/02/2017

This variety is endemic to the northern Wasatch Range in Box Elder, Cache, and Weber counties of Utah. About 15 known occurrences. The primary threat is invasive species.?

Tom Grant and Michelle DePrenger-Levin
  • 01/01/2010

Habitat destruction due to ski resort development

Tom Grant and Michelle DePrenger-Levin
  • 01/01/2010

Draba burkei occurs in four areas along the Cache Valley and to the southwest: the Wellsville Mountains, Willard Peak and Mt. Ben Lomond, Mt. Ogden and an isolated population on James Peak (Windham 1998).

Tom Grant and Michelle DePrenger-Levin
  • 01/01/2010

Taxonomic study of Draba maguirei and allied taxa by Dr. Michael D. Windham and Mark Beilstein (Windham 1998). Seed germination experiments completed by Denver Botanic Gardens in 2001. Population monitoring studies (Johnson 2001)

Tom Grant and Michelle DePrenger-Levin
  • 01/01/2010

Seed has been stored in the National Center for Genetic Resources Preservation in Fort Collins, Colorado. The goal of the NCGRP is to preserve a collection of genetic resources to secure the biological diversity of these rare species in case of an unfortunate, catastrophic event. Since this species is so newly separated into a good species, no management plan has been developed.

Tom Grant and Michelle DePrenger-Levin
  • 01/01/2010

More information is needed to know how to best protect Draba burkei and determine its possible listing as an endangered or threatened species under the ESA. Pollination studies are needed.

Tom Grant and Michelle DePrenger-Levin
  • 01/01/2010

Vegetative propagation of Draba burkei stored at Denver Botanic Gardens is currently being attempted

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Photos
Nomenclature
Taxon Draba burkei
Authority (C.L. Hitchc.) Windham & Beilstein
Family Brassicaceae
CPC Number 1469
ITIS 823245
USDA DRBU2
Common Names Burkes draba | snowbasin draba
Associated Scientific Names Draba maguirei var. burkei | Draba burkei
Distribution Draba burkei is endemic to Utah with occurrences known only in Box Elder, Cache and Weber counties. (NatureServe 2003) It occurs in four areas of the Wellsville and Wasatch Mountains along the Cache.
State Rank
State State Rank
Utah S2
Habitat

In the southern end of its range, Draba burkei is found growing on a substrate of quartzite while plants in the northern and central portions are found on limestone or calcareous shale outcrops. This is in contrast to the dolomite preference of its allied taxa, Draba maguirei. Draba burkei is often found in the crevices of rock outcrops on cooler north or northwest slopes (NY Botanical Garden). This taxa is found among various combinations of Acer, Pseudotsuga, Pinus, Abies, Juniperus, Cercocarpus, Poa, Agrostis and Carex.

Ecological Relationships

Draba burkei is associated with quartzite soils in its southern range and limestone or calcareous shale outcrops in its northern and central range (Windham 1998). Draba maguirei, of which Burkes draba has been considered a variety, grows within Douglas fir and mixed conifer communities at an elevation of 1830 to 2930 meters (Welsh et al. 1987). Burkes draba is found in association with Acer, Psudotsuga, Pinus, Abies, Juniperus, Cercocarpus, Poa, Agrostis and Carex (Windham 1998).

Pollinators
Common Name Name in Text Association Type Source InteractionID
Reintroduction
Lead Institution State Reintroduction Type Year of First Outplanting

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