CPC Plant Profile: Ruby Valley Buckwheat
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Plant Profile

Ruby Valley Buckwheat (Eriogonum argophyllum)

Image of Eriogonum argophyllum Photo Credit: Steve Caicco
Description
  • Global Rank: G1 - Critically Imperiled
  • Legal Status: N/A
  • Family: Polygonaceae
  • State: NV
  • Nature Serve ID: 141733
  • Date Inducted in National Collection: 04/01/1990

During the 1990's this species was proposed for listing as federally endangered because the one known population was on unprotected property and threatened by a number of activities, including geothermal development that proposed to divert the surface water and lowering the water table that this species depends upon. As of 2000, however, the threat of geothermal development in the vicinity of the known population has been eliminated (see USFWS 2000). In addition, the threat of livestock trampling and off-road vehicle use has apparently been eliminated, as a fence was built around the habitat where the species is found. (USFWS 2000) Ruby Valley buckwheat is a, low-clumped herbaceous perennial that forms a mat of white-hairy leaves. Yellow flowers that become tinged with reddish-brown as they mature can be found on leafless flowering stalks during the months of June and July . This species is found in only one location in the world, on sulfur pools and near hot springs in Elko County, Nevada. (NNHP 2001)

Participating Institutions
Updates
  • 09/09/2020
  • Living Collection

Seeds have been germinated and grown to maturity in the greenhouse at Red Butte Garden and Arboretum

  • 09/09/2020
  • Propagation Research

Seeds have been germinated and grown to maturity in the greenhouse at Red Butte Garden and Arboretum (Meyer 1999)

  • 09/09/2020
  • Orthodox Seed Banking

Stored seed bank should be tested for viability and new seeds should be added to the collection.

  • 09/09/2020
  • Seed Collection

Stored seed bank should be tested for viability and new seeds should be added to the collection.

Nature Serve Biotics
  • 05/02/2017

Known from a single hot spring in Nevada - nearby sites with a similar habitat have been searched without success. Although currently protected through a cooperative agreement with the private landowner, future development is a potential threat. This species grows on a fragile gravel substrate creating by outflow of the main hot spring. Small changes to the water table or disturbances caused by livestock trampling could cause significant population declines.

Sylvia Torti
  • 01/01/2010

Cattle grazing and trampling Geothermal development Off-road vehicle activity (NNHP 2001)

Sylvia Torti
  • 01/01/2010

One population is known, occurring in Nevada and containing 3500 to 5000 individuals (USFWS 2000).

Sylvia Torti
  • 01/01/2010

Seeds have been germinated and grown to maturity in the greenhouse at Red Butte Garden and Arboretum (Meyer 1999)

Sylvia Torti
  • 01/01/2010

Species occurs on private land, but is fenced to protect it from a number of threats. The State of Nevada has listed the species as ""critically endangered"", and the Nevada Division of Forestry monitors any potentially harmful activity associated with the site where the species occurs. (USFWS 2000)

Sylvia Torti
  • 01/01/2010

Little is known about the ecology of this species.

Sylvia Torti
  • 01/01/2010

Stored seed bank should be tested for viability and new seeds should be added to the collection.

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Photos
Nomenclature
Taxon Eriogonum argophyllum
Authority Reveal
Family Polygonaceae
CPC Number 1688
ITIS 21073
USDA ERAR18
Common Names Ruby Valley buckwheat | Silver Lake buckwheat | wild buckwheat | Sulphur Hot Springs buckwheat | Sulphur Springs buckwheat
Associated Scientific Names Eriogonum argophyllum
Distribution One location in Nevada's Ruby Valley (Elko County).
State Rank
State State Rank
Nevada S1
Habitat

Shallow, coarse-loamy evaporite crusted sandy soils along runoff channels on hot spring mounds. It is usually in sagebrush, rabbitbrush, open scrub communities, and is wetland dependent. (NNHP 2001)

Ecological Relationships

This species is dependent on a very specific edaphic environment.

Pollinators
Common Name Name in Text Association Type Source InteractionID

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