CPC Plant Profile: Ash Meadows Blazingstar
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Plant Profile

Ash Meadows Blazingstar (Mentzelia leucophylla)

Mentzelia leucophylla budding Photo Credit: Wikimedia
  • Global Rank: G1 - Critically Imperiled
  • Legal Status: Federally Threatened
  • Family: Loasaceae
  • State: NV
  • Nature Serve ID: 134251
  • Date Inducted in National Collection: 02/10/1987

Mentzelia leucophylla is an endemic species found on alkaline soil in arroyos, canyons washes, and near spring areas at Ash Meadows National Wildlife Refuge. A biennial herb, which grows on highly alkaline soils in ash Meadows Wildlife Refuge. This genus has white stems, leaves densley covered with stiff hairs and bright yellow flowers. Flowers will only open for brief periods in the late afternoon. Bloomtime is in late May through September, and it grows up to 50 cm high.

Participating Institutions
  • 09/19/2020
  • Reproductive Research

Reproductive study revealed self compatability with lower seed production than cross-fertilization

  • 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 Mentzelia oreophila in orthodox seed collection. There are as many as 857 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, California Botanic Garden has collected 1 seed accessions of Mentzelia oreophila 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

Narrowly confined to a spring-fed desert wetland area with extremely saline soils. Only 8 sites are known, all in Nye County, Nevada. This species and its habitat are extremely threatened by development. Agricultural development and the associated large-scale exploitation of the region's water resources have already destroyed large portions of the local native flora.

Rita Dodge
  • 01/01/2010

agriculture trampling by wild horses and livestock off-vehicle disturbance invaisve species ground water pumping

Rita Dodge
  • 01/01/2010

Small populations (12 element occurrences) in Ash Meadow, NV occupying 13.5 acres

Rita Dodge
  • 01/01/2010

Reproductive study revealed self compatability with lower seed production than cross-fertilization. Pollinator observations.

Rita Dodge
  • 01/01/2010

Part of the Ash Meadows National Wildlife Refuge.

Rita Dodge
  • 01/01/2010

Ex-situ conservation

Rita Dodge
  • 01/01/2010

Currently is not represented in an ex-situ seed collection. THis is a high priority for the USFWS.


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Taxon Mentzelia leucophylla
Authority Brandeg.
Family Loasaceae
CPC Number 2824
ITIS 202471
Common Names Ash Meadows Blazing Star
Associated Scientific Names Mentzelia leucophylla
Distribution Nye County Nevada in the Upper Amargosa Wash. Occupies 13.5 acres.
State Rank
State State Rank
Nevada S1

Occupies alkaline soils in dry washes and on barren bluffs, it is associated with dry soils and apparently is uninfluenced by seepage from springs or seeps. Found in light-colored, fine-grained soils with a high salt content, often growing with 2 other narrowly endemic plants, the Ash Meadows milk-vetch (Astragalus phoenix) and the Ash Meadows sunray (Enceliopsis nudicaulis var. corrugata).

Ecological Relationships

It is visited by 11 insect pollinators, 10 of which are ees. It grows with two other narrowly endemic species to the Ash Meadows alkaline soils.

Common Name Name in Text Association Type Source InteractionID

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