Sidalcea oregana subsp. eximia

(Greene) C. L. Hitchcock

Perenn. Sp. Sidalcea, 66. 1957.

Common names: Humboldt checkerbloom
Conservation concernEndemic
Basionym: Sidalcea eximia Greene Cybele Columb. 1: 34. 1914
Treatment appears in FNA Volume 6. Treatment on page 349. Mentioned on page 348, 350, 351, 354.

Plants 0.9–1.5 m, with short, thick, rather woody taproot and branching caudex. Stems sometimes rooting at base, usually branched distally, often hollow but firm, base conspicuously densely bristly, hairs simple with swollen base, 1–2.5 mm. Leaves: stipules lanceolate, 10–14 × 2 mm; petioles of basal and proximal leaves (5–)10–20(–30) cm, 3–4+ times as long as blade, reduced distally and distalmost leaves nearly sessile; blade reniform-orbiculate, cordate, unlobed and margins merely crenate or shallowly 5–7(–9)-lobed, 3–9.5(–12) × 3–13 cm, blades distally all deeply 5–7-lobed essentially to base, hairs simple on both sides, 1–1.5 mm, distalmost blades usually 5-parted with irregularly-toothed lobes. Inflorescences spiciform, dense, calyces usually overlapping, branched, 20+-flowered, 3–8 cm, little elongating in fruit, flowers and fruits overlapping; primary peduncles (above distalmost leaf) usually equaling or shorter than mature inflorescence; bracts linear-lanceolate, undivided, 7 mm, usually longer than young flower buds and conspicuous then, much longer than pedicels, shorter than to nearly equaling calyx. Pedicels 1–2 mm. Flowers bisexual; calyx 8–10 mm, to 13 mm in fruit, stellate-puberulent, conspicuously bristly-tomentose especially on base, hairs 1.5–2.5 mm; petals pink, 15–16 mm; staminal column 9 mm, hirtellous-hairy; anthers white; stigmas 7–9. Schizocarps 5–6 mm diam.; mericarps 7–9, 2.5 mm, sparsely puberulent with a few bristles, smooth or nearly so, margins rounded, mucro 0.5–0.7 mm. Seeds 2 mm.

Phenology: Flowering Jun–Aug(–Sep).
Habitat: Meadow openings, prairies
Elevation: 0–1200 m


Subspecies eximia is uncommon and somewhat obscure. It was recognized by Hitchcock because of its notably accrescent and long-hirsute calyces and its robust habit and narrow range. It clearly intergrades with subsp. spicata and also strongly resembles Sidalcea setosa. There are no recent collections of subsp. eximia and only a limited number of older ones; it may be extirpated. It is known from the northern coast and North Coast Ranges in Humboldt County.

Of conservation concern.

Selected References


Lower Taxa