CPC Plant Profile: Dehesa (San Diego) Bear-grass
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Plant Profile

Dehesa (San Diego) Bear-grass (Nolina interrata)

This shot shows an entire plant of Dehesa beargrass. Photo Credit: Dylan Hannon
Description
  • Global Rank: G2 - Imperiled
  • Legal Status: N/A
  • Family: Liliaceae
  • State: CA
  • Nature Serve ID: 138817
  • Date Inducted in National Collection: 03/08/1989

Nolina interrata is a large succulent perennial that forms rosettes of long, flat leaves and tall flowering stalks. The lightly colored flowers are dioecious and produce reddish brown seeds (Hickman 1993). This endangered plant is found in the chaparral region of south central San Diego County. Continuing threats to this species include urbanization and collection of individuals for sale (USFWS 1998).

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 1 accessions of Nolina interrata in orthodox seed collection. We are uncertain as to how many total seeds are in this collection.

  • 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 Nolina interrata in orthodox seed collection. There are as many as 10508 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 1 seed accessions of Nolina interrata from 1 plant occurrences listed in the California Natural Diversity Database. These collections together emcompass 60 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 Nolina interrata 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

Nolina interrata is known from nine populations in a 15.6 square km area in San Diego County, California, and from three small, somewhat disjunct populations in northern Baja California, Mexico. There are a total of about 9000 plants. About two-thirds of all populations, and 90-100% of all major populations, are protected on lands owned and managed by The Nature Conservancy at McGinty Mountain and by the California Department of Fish and Game at Sycuan Peak. Collection of wild plants for the nursery trade and altered fire regimes have been identified as threats.

  • 01/01/2010

Urbanization and agricultural expansion.

  • 01/01/2010

A total of about 9,000 Nolina interrata plants are known (USFWS 2002). The unique population clustered near Dehesa School shows an atypical, proliferating growth habit; repeated subjection to fire may be an important factor. This species is well scattered in the open scrub west of the school. Healthy colonies are at scattered locales on McGinty Peak; they constitute an important population and should be protected. Vigorous colonies occur on Sequan Peak, and are also found around a broad native grassland approximately 1 mile south of Suncrest. It is also reported on Barber Mountain, near Lawson Valley Road and its intersection with Skyline Truck Trail, Jamul Butte, Wood Valley, Pat's Mountain, and on the west side of Sloane Canyon on The Mesa. Three populations are known in Baja California with the southernmost being at Rancho de la Cruz north of Ensenada at 31 58' North; where collected by Moran (SD 109041). This specimen is located in the San Diego Natural History Museum's herbarium. It is also reported from Canon Acre and Rancho la Fortuna.

  • 01/01/2010

Part of the McGinty Mountains have been established as a preserve.

  • 01/01/2010

Studies determining if fire management will aid in the reproduction of this species are needed. Transplanting may also be necessary to augment reproduction in populations of the same sex.

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Photos
Nomenclature
Taxon Nolina interrata
Authority Gentry
Family Liliaceae
CPC Number 2961
ITIS 42992
USDA NOIN
Common Names Dehesa bear-grass | San Diego bear-grass | Dehesa beargrass
Associated Scientific Names Nolina interrata
Distribution Southwestern San Diego County in California and adjacent Baja California, Mexico. (CDFG 2002)
State Rank
State State Rank
California S2
Habitat

Nolina interrata prefers the Open Southern Mixed Chaparral and Chamise Chaparral. It may respond positively to fire (USFWS 1998); a frequent occurrence in these ecosystems. Most populations apparently occur on Las Posas stony fine sandy loams.Nolina interrata is often associated with other rare plants such as Senecio ganderi (Gander's butterweed), Acanthomintha ilicifolia (San Diego thornmint), Monardella hypoleuca ssp. lanata (felt-leaved monardella), and Fritillaria biflora (chocolate lily). The association of N. interrata with these species reflects the distribution of clay soils formed from gabbro soils in the region (USFWS 1998).

Ecological Relationships

Unknown.

Pollinators
Common Name Name in Text Association Type Source InteractionID

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