CPC Plant Profile: Springville Clarkia
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Plant Profile

Springville Clarkia (Clarkia springvillensis)

Clarkia springvillensis flower close up Photo Credit: Fletcher Linton
Description
  • Global Rank: G2 - Imperiled
  • Legal Status: Federally Threatened
  • Family: Onagraceae
  • State: CA
  • Nature Serve ID: 159320
  • Date Inducted in National Collection: 03/26/2020

Clarkia springvillensis is a rare annual herb in the evening primrose family (Onagraceae). This plant species has simple or branched stems, narrow leaves, and bright lavender-pink flowers with a dark purplish spot near the base of each petal; the flowers bloom from May to July (Hickman 1993, Munz 1974). Clarkia springvillensis is restricted to the Sierra Nevada Foothills in Tulare County near the town of Springville. There are several threats to this species and at least one population has been extirpated due to development in the region (CNDDB 2007). Clarkia springvillensis was listed as endangered by the state of California in 1979 and was listed as threatened by the Federal government in 1998. The type locality of C. springvillensis is now extirpated due to mobile home development (USFWS 1998), and historically road widening and cattle grazing have reduced populations at six sites. Ongoing residential development, timber operations and road maintenance threaten three populations (USFWS 1998), and one population now managed by California Department of Fish and game has been fragmented due to prior construction of a well, access road, and leveling of a knoll for home construction.

Participating Institutions
Updates
  • 09/04/2020
  • Propagation Research

Research on the seed bank of C. springvillensis showed that seeds are capable of remaining viable for at least two seasons, and thus maintain a dormant seed bank (McCue and Holstford 1998, McCue et al. 1996). The seeds of this species typically germinate in late November or early December under field conditions (McCue and Holtsford 1998).

  • 09/04/2020
  • Genetic Research

Research has been conducted on the influence of the seed bank on genetic diversity and population genetic structure of Clarkia springvillensis (McCue and Holstford 1998, McCue et al. 1996). These studies have shown that genetic differentiation among populations is low and the seed bank may be partly responsible for keeping diversity high and differentiation low among these populations by buffering the effects of small population size and bottlenecks (McCue and Holstford 1998, McCue et al. 1996).

  • 09/01/2020
  • Orthodox Seed Banking

Based on an September 2020 extract of the California Plant Rescue Database, University of California-Santa Cruz Arboretum & Botanic Garden holds 1 accessions of Clarkia springvillensis in orthodox seed collection. We are uncertain as to how many total seeds are in this collection.

  • 08/05/2020
  • Seed Collection

Based on an August 2020 extract of the California Plant Rescue Database, California Native Plant Society has collected 1 seed accessions of Clarkia springvillensis from 1 plant occurrences listed in the California Natural Diversity Database. These collections together emcompass 50 maternal plants

Nature Serve Biotics
  • 05/02/2017

Endemic to the foothills of the Sierra Nevada in a small area of Tulare County, California. There are about 10 populations known extant. Mobile home development, road widening/maintenance, and moderate to heavy cattle grazing have destroyed or seriously reduced populations in the past and continue to threaten the species.

Naomi Fraga
  • 01/01/2010

Threats cited for this plant species include: urbanization, livestock grazing, timber operations, competition with non natives, altered fire regimes, inadequate State regulatory mechanisms, sphinx moth predation, and roadway maintenance activities.

Naomi Fraga
  • 01/01/2010

Of the fifteen known sites of Clarkia springvillensis fourteen remain extant. Population size of this annual plant species fluctuates from year to year.

Naomi Fraga
  • 01/01/2010

Research has been conducted on the influence of the seed bank on genetic diversity and population genetic structure of Clarkia springvillensis (McCue and Holstford 1998, McCue et al. 1996). These studies have shown that genetic differentiation among populations is low and the seed bank may be partly responsible for keeping diversity high and differentiation low among these populations by buffering the effects of small population size and bottlenecks (McCue and Holstford 1998, McCue et al. 1996). Research on the seed bank of C. springvillensis showed that seeds are capable of remaining viable for at least two seasons, and thus maintain a dormant seed bank (McCue and Holstford 1998, McCue et al. 1996). The seeds of this species typically germinate in late November or early December under field conditions (McCue and Holtsford 1998).

Naomi Fraga
  • 01/01/2010

A draft interim management plan was developed by California Department of Fish and Game in 1989. The Sequoia National Forest developed a management plan in 1987 for populations that are administered by the USDA Forest Service. Three of the four populations that occur on Sequoia National Forest have been fenced.

Naomi Fraga
  • 01/01/2010

Clarkia species are pollinated by bees (superfamily Apoidea), however specific pollinators for this species need to be determined. Environmental factors that stimulate seed germination need to be studied.

Naomi Fraga
  • 01/01/2010

Establish and maintain a genetically representative seed bank.

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Nomenclature
Taxon Clarkia springvillensis
Authority Vasek
Family Onagraceae
CPC Number 990
ITIS 27629
USDA CLSP6
Common Names Springville Clarkia
Associated Scientific Names Clarkia springvillensis
Distribution Clarkia springvillensis is endemic to Tulare County California, with fifteen known occurrences, fourteen of which are extant (CNDDB 2007). The majority of the occurrences are found within a 111 sq km
State Rank
State State Rank
California S2
Habitat

Clarkia springvillensis is restricted to roadsides and grassy openings in blue oak (Quercus douglasii) woodland near the Tule River in the Sierra Nevada foothills. It is often found on granite soils in open sunny sites from 1,220 to 3,000 ft (360 to 910 m) in elevation. The most favorable sites for C. springvillensis seem to be steep south or west facing slopes where tree and grass cover are sparse (McCue et al. 1996).

Ecological Relationships

Clarkia springvillensis is susceptible to predation by the larvae of sphinx moths (Sphingidae). Larvae of this moth have been observed feeding on plants of this species at one site (USFWS 1998). The extent to which predation by sphinx moths threatens this species is unknown. It has been suggested that appropriate grazing regimes may benefit this species in some situations by reducing the abundance of nonnative plants and thereby lessening competitive pressure. However, intensive grazing has been identified as one of the greatest threats to the species (CDFG 2007).

Pollinators
Common Name Name in Text Association Type Source InteractionID

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