CPC Plant Profile: Clay-loving Wild Buckwheat
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Plant Profile

Clay-loving Wild Buckwheat (Eriogonum pelinophilum)

View of this low-growing shrub with creamy pink flowers. Photo Credit: J. Dawson
Description
  • Global Rank: N/A
  • Legal Status: N/A
  • Family: Polygonaceae
  • State: CO
  • Nature Serve ID: 157709
  • Date Inducted in National Collection: 02/25/1988

Clay-loving wild buckwheat is a low, rounded sub-shrub arising from a woody taproot. Its flowers are white to cream, blooming in June and July. It has numerous woody branches from which bark hangs off in loose strips. The plant is found in sparsely vegetated shrub-lands and on barren adobe clay soils. (The Colorado Native Plant Society 1997) This species was described from a single specimen collected by Howard Gentry in 1958. The specimen sat in a herbarium for years before botanist James Reveal noticed a difference in this plant from other Eriogonum species (1973).

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Updates
  • 10/05/2020
  • Reproductive Research

Bowlin et al. (1992) did research on the reproductive biology of this species. Over 50 species of insects were found foraging on flowers of this species, about half of them native bees, and eighteen of the different species of ants, which were found foraging on pollen in the flowers (Bowlin 1992). Seeds can be produced both by selfing and outcrossing, but only with the aid of insect pollinators (Bowlin 1992).

Nature Serve Biotics
  • 05/02/2017

Large numbers of individuals over a small range and restricted to a very specific habitat. Known from 19 occurrences with threats at almost every location; some occurrences are reported to be extirpated (Reveal 2003).

Carol Dawson
  • 01/01/2010

Threats include habitat conversion to agriculture, residential development, off-road vehicles, gas and oil exploration (USFWS 1988).

Carol Dawson
  • 01/01/2010

Six meta-populations consisting of a total of 20 sites are now known; estimated total population for the species is ca. 45,000-50,000 individuals (USFWS 1988).

Carol Dawson
  • 01/01/2010

Bowlin et al. (1992) did research on the reproductive biology of this species.

Carol Dawson
  • 01/01/2010

Bureau of Land Management, Uncompahgre Basin Resource Management Plan and Record of Decision: July, 1989. This plan completes the designation process for Fairview RNA/ACEC. This plan prohibits surface occupancy of the RNA for oil, gas or mineral extraction, but not grazing or utility facilities. Grazing will continue unless studies determine the plants or potential habitats are being damaged. (BLM 1988, 1989)

Carol Dawson
  • 01/01/2010

Additional seed collection for long-term seed storage.

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Photos
Nomenclature
Taxon Eriogonum pelinophilum
Authority Reveal
Family Polygonaceae
CPC Number 1773
ITIS 21219
USDA ERPE10
Common Names clay-loving wild-buckwheat | clayloving buckwheat
Associated Scientific Names Eriogonum pelinophilum
Distribution Endemic to western Colorado (Delta and Montrose Cos.) (Spackman 1997)
State Rank
State State Rank
Colorado S2
Habitat

Mancos Shale badlands in salt mixed desert shrub community. Elev. 5200-6400 ft. (Spackman 1997)

Ecological Relationships

Over 50 species of insects were found foraging on flowers of this species, about half of them native bees, and eighteen of the different species of ants, which were found foraging on pollen in the flowers (Bowlin 1992). Seeds can be produced both by selfing and outcrossing, but only with the aid of insect pollinators (Bowlin 1992).

Pollinators
Common Name Name in Text Association Type Source InteractionID
Bees
Bees Floral Visitor Link
Butterflies & Moths
Butterflies Floral Visitor Link
Beetles
Beetles Floral Visitor Link
Flies
Flies Floral Visitor Link
Other
Wasps Floral Visitor Link
Reintroduction
Lead Institution State Reintroduction Type Year of First Outplanting

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