Phacelia sivinskii N.D. Atwood, P. Knight & T. Lowrey
Family: Boraginaceae
Phacelia sivinskii image
Robert Sivinski  
New Mexico Rare Plant Technical Council website, Allred and Ivey 2012
Duration: Biennial Nativity: Native Lifeform: Forb/Herb General: Biennial herbs, 20-40 cm tall; stems solitary to several, usually erect and unbranched, densely covered with sessile or short-stalked, light-colored glands, as well as short and long nonglandular hairs. Leaves: Stem leaves alternate, abundant, the lower leaves on petioles and upper leaves sessile or nearly so; basal leaves sometimes present, on petioles up to 12 cm long; blades oblong to oval in outline, 1-6 cm long, 0.5-2 cm wide, the margins irregularly crenate-dentate, surfaces densely covered with short, light-colored, stipitate glands. Flowers: Pale purple and showy, arranged in numerous scorpioid racemes at branch tips; corollas tubular to tubular-campanulate, light violet, 4-5 mm long, 5-lobed, the lobes 2 mm long, puberulent; stamens dark violet, exserted 5-6 mm beyond corolla. Fruits: Capsule 2-3 mm long, glandular and hispidulous; containing 4 black, oblong, seeds, 2-3 mm long, excavated ventrally, margins and ridge entire to corrugated, dorsal surface pitted and cross-corrugated. Ecology: Restricted to soils derived from gypsum from the Upper Jurassic Todilto Formation of northwestern and north-central New Mexico (Cibola and Sandoval counties) and from the Permian Yeso Formation (Socorro and Valencia counties), in sparse juniper/desert scr Distribution: Cibola, Sandoval, Socorro, and Valencia counties in New Mexico Notes: Because of its shallowly lobed leaves, this narrow endemic could easily be confused with Phacelia integrifolia, in particular P. integrifolia var. taxana which also occurs on gypsum soils. However, that particular variety is restricted to the southeastern part of the state. P. integrifolia var. texana is usually a large annual with long branches from the base. P. sivinskii is a robust biennial with an unbranched, single stem. Short, raceme-bearing branches on well-developed individuals extend from the base to the top of the plant. Although the original species description (Atwood and Welsh, 2005) states that Phacelia sivinskii is restricted to the Todilto Formation, which occurs only in northern New Mexico (north of the Albuquerque area), collections have been made in Socorro and Valencia counties, from the Permian Yeso Formation. Outcrops of gypsum of various ages occur in many places in New Mexico, so it seems possible that the distribution of this species is much larger than is currently documented. The genus Phacelia has at different times been placed in Hyrophyllaceae (the water-leaf family) and Boraginaceae (the borage family), so you may need to check both families before finding it in reference books and herbarium cabinets. Ethnobotany: Unknown Etymology: Phacelia is based on the Greek phakelos, meaning "cluster," alluding to the densely crowded flower spikes of most species of the genus; sivinskii honors Robert Sivinski, botanist for the New Mexico State Forestry Division from 1989-2011. Editor: AHazelton 2017
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This project made possible by National Science Foundation Award 1410069