The Vascular Flora of the Yaqui Pass Area, Anza-Borrego Desert State Park
Pinyon / Yaqui Ridge is the prominent ridge seen south and southwest from the Borrego Valley that forms the southern boundary of Borrego Valley. The Ridge has been raised along faults on its north and south side, creating very steep slopes for much of its north and south slopes.
The Ridge is cut near its eastern end at Yaqui Pass, which is traversed by Highway S3, the Yaqui Pass Road, which is renamed Borrego Springs Road when it enters the Borrego Valley. The portion of the Ridge east of Yaqui Pass has been named Yaqui Ridge.
The Yaqui Pass area is shown in Fig. 1, along with the routes we have surveyed, and the area searched for vouchers. We define the Yaqui Pass area to be that area of Pinyon / Yaqui Ridge which is most easily accessed from Highway S3, excluding the area of San Felipe Creek, which has a very different flora. The southern boundary is therefore fairly well defined, but the northern boundary is nebulous, where Pinyon / Yaqui Ridge grades into the alluvial slopes of Yaqui Meadows / Borrego Valley.
Fig. 1. The Yaqui Pass area. The area searched for vouchers is outlined by the black rectangle. Five surveys have been done in this area, two in the area north of Yaqui Pass from S3 to a major drainage to the west, two along the ridge west of Yaqui Pass, and one along the ridge area east of Yaqui Pass, labeled by the dates of the surveys. The unlabeled red surveys at upper left are part of the Glorietta Canyon flora.
We first became interested in this area when Charlie Jones told James Dillane about the Scutellaria mexicana (=Salazaria mexicana) he had confirmed here on 28 April 2009 with Charles L. Bennett, after Charlie had spotted them blooming a few years previously at this location. Pictures of these plants are here. The location of these plants is shown in Fig. 1 at the far left, at the location of the flag with the hard-to-read reduced label of Salazaria.
This checklist is only a start at a flora of Yaqui Pass, since we have done only five surveys here, sampling only a small fraction of the total area. Also, our surveys were never done in a good rainfall year.
The surveys done so far are:
- Two surveys on the ridge west of Yaqui Pass. The number of plants from the sum of those two surveys are given in the column Rdg in the checklist below.
- A mostly-hike on 3 December 2010 of 3.3 miles of the ridge west of Yaqui Pass, by Tom Chester, James Dillane, and Charlie Jones, from 1700 feet to 3367 feet. This trip had the specific goal of vouchering the Scutellaria mexicana (=Salazaria mexicana) discovered by Charlie Jones there a few years earlier. Only 27 species were recorded on that trip: those that were in bloom, associates at the Salazaria voucher location, and a few other species found only on the plateau area that contained the Salazaria. After the trip, additional species were recorded from memory, and abundance estimates were made, resulting in a total of 65 species.
In 2014, we have memories of Oligomeris linifolia from this survey, but since it wasn't recorded in a timely manner, and human memories sometimes confuse different trips years later, we haven't placed it in the checklist.
- A survey on 5 December 2014 of 1.6 miles of that ridge, by Tom Chester, Adrienne Ballwey, Jim Roberts and Jeff Field, from 1700 feet elevation to 2880 feet. This survey found 56 species. A somewhat different route was taken on the way back from the farthest point reached along the ridge, for 1.05 miles, but no additional species were found.
- Two surveys in the area north of Yaqui Pass, extending from Highway S3 to a major drainage on the west. The number of plants from the sum of those two surveys are given in the column Cyn (for Canyon) in the checklist below
- A survey on 15 February 2013 reaching 1.75 miles of the area west of Highway S3, beginning at S3 1.3 miles north of Yaqui Pass, just south of the small hill Ship on the topo map, by Tom Chester and Adrienne Ballwey. The survey reached a major drainage to the west, and surveyed up that canyon for 0.13 mile. A total of 2.5 unique miles were covered, by taking a different route for part of the way back. A total of 77 species were found.
- A survey on 10 March 2013 of 0.8 miles of that major drainage, and 0.8 miles of the minor drainage to its immediate east that joins the major drainage at the lower end of this survey, by Tom Chester, Kate Harper and Lance Holmberg. A total of 2.4 additional miles were surveyed, with an additional 35 species found, for a total of 112 species in this area.
- One survey in the area east of Yaqui Pass, including part of Highway S3 and the wash north from Yaqui Pass, by Tom Chester, Keir Morse, and James Dillane. That survey covered 4.2 miles, finding a total of 75 species.
A total of 141 taxa were found in the union of all five surveys.
Vouchers from the Yaqui Pass area were obtained from a search on 16 February 2013. The Consortium records were searched for vouchers with coordinates between 33.14 and 33.17° N. Latitude, and -116.37 and -116.31 E. Longitude. An additional search was made for vouchers with Yaqui Pass in their locality. A review of the localities resulted in eliminating 14 vouchers as not being in the target area, leaving 117 vouchers, of 67 unique taxa.
This voucher search box is smaller than the area we define as the Yaqui Pass Area, but there were no vouchers with coordinates in the area of Pinyon / Yaqui Ridge to the west of this search box, and the only vouchers to the north of the search box were well away from the Yaqui Pass area, in the transition to the alluvial plain.
Species found in those vouchers to the north, that are not present in this Yaqui Pass Area checklist, are:
- Calycoseris wrightii
- Chaenactis stevioides
- Cryptantha angustifolia
- Logfia depressa
- Malacothrix glabrata
- Nemacladus rubescens
- Psathyrotes ramosissima
The combined checklist from surveys and vouchers contains 156 taxa. Of those 156 taxa, 89 were found only from our surveys; 52 were found both in our surveys and in vouchers; and 15 were found only from vouchers.
The Checklist follows the 2012 Jepson Manual Second Edition with only a few exceptions.
See Information about the links from the Scientific Name and Common Name.
The column #V gives the number of vouchers found in this area.
The columns #Plants gives a minimum estimate of the number of plants from the field surveys in the two separate areas surveyed, up to a maximum of 99 plants, for species for which abundances were estimated. The main intent of this estimate is to indicate the species for which we found very few plants.
The column RdgW is for the two surveys along the ridge west of Yaqui Pass, and the column RdgE is for the single survey along the ridge east of Yaqui Pass, including part of the road and wash north from Yaqui Pass. Note that no survey has been done at prime time in either of these areas, and thus these columns are missing most spring annuals and perennials.
The column Cyn (for Canyon) is for the area north of Yaqui Pass that included a major drainage to the west.
It is possible that Oligomeris linifolia should be added to the checklist; we'll search for this in future surveys.
See also the neighboring Glorietta Canyon flora.
Version for printing, without lines and other text on this page: html (4 pages) or pdf Clickbook booklet (1 double-sided page). (See printing instructions for an explanation of these options)
# Family Scientific Name (*) Common Name #V #Plants RdgW Cyn RdgE Lycopods 1 Selag Selaginella eremophila desert spike-moss 30 99 Ferns 2 Pteri Cheilanthes parryi woolly lipfern 15 40 99 3 Pteri Notholaena californica ssp. californica California cloak fern 3 2 10 Gymnosperms 4 Cupre Juniperus californica California juniper 30 5 Ephed Ephedra aspera Mormon tea 99 40 10 Eudicots 6 Acant Justicia californica chuparosa 4 20 99 50 7 Amara Amaranthus fimbriatus fringed amaranth 1 99 8 Apiac Spermolepis lateriflora bristly spermolepis 1 9 Apocy Asclepias subulata rush milkweed 2 6 6 10 Apocy Funastrum hirtellum rambling milkweed 1 15 11 Apocy Matelea parvifolia spearleaf 6 1 12 Aster Adenophyllum porophylloides San Felipe dogweed 99 20 20 13 Aster Ambrosia dumosa burroweed 2 99 50 99 14 Aster Ambrosia salsola var. salsola cheesebush 10 60 5 15 Aster Baccharis brachyphylla short-leaved baccharis 2 16 Aster Bahiopsis parishii Parish's viguiera 20 20 17 Aster Bebbia juncea var. aspera sweetbush 99 75 99 18 Aster Brickellia frutescens shrubby brickellia 3 19 Aster Chaenactis carphoclinia var. carphoclinia pebble pincushion 15 20 Aster Chaenactis fremontii Fremont pincushion 99 21 Aster Dicoria canescens desert dicoria 1 22 Aster Encelia farinosa brittlebush 1 99 99 99 23 Aster Ericameria brachylepis boundary goldenbush 99 24 Aster Gutierrezia californica California matchweed 99 19 25 Aster Monoptilon bellioides desert star 1 26 Aster Palafoxia arida var. arida Spanish needle 1 27 Aster Pectis papposa var. papposa chinch-weed 4 28 Aster Perityle emoryi Emory's rock-daisy 1 1 2 29 Aster Pleurocoronis pluriseta arrow-leaf 55 5 30 Aster Porophyllum gracile odora 5 4 31 Aster Rafinesquia neomexicana desert chicory 15 32 Aster Senecio mohavensis Mojave ragwort 20 33 Aster Stephanomeria pauciflora wire-lettuce 1 99 40 50 34 Aster Trichoptilium incisum yellow-head 1 1 35 Aster Trixis californica var. californica California trixis 1 60 25 15 36 Borag Amsinckia intermedia common fiddleneck 25 37 Borag Amsinckia tessellata var. tessellata bristly fiddleneck 4 sp15 38 Borag Cryptantha barbigera var. barbigera bearded cryptantha 3 ~99 39 Borag Cryptantha maritima Guadalupe cryptantha 99 40 Borag Cryptantha nevadensis var. nevadensis Nevada cryptantha 1 11 41 Borag Cryptantha pterocarya var. cycloptera Tucson wing-nut cryptantha 99 42 Borag Cryptantha racemosa bushy cryptantha 1 43 Borag Emmenanthe penduliflora var. penduliflora whispering bells 1 99 44 Borag Eucrypta chrysanthemifolia var. bipinnatifida eucrypta 8 45 Borag Nama demissum var. demissum purple mat 22 46 Borag Pectocarya recurvata curvenut combseed 1 99 47 Borag Phacelia cicutaria var. hispida caterpillar phacelia 1 48 Borag Phacelia crenulata var. minutiflora little-flowered heliotrope phacelia 1 99 49 Borag Phacelia distans common phacelia 1 99 99 50 Borag Phacelia pedicellata pedicellate phacelia 1 3 51 Borag Pholistoma membranaceum white fiesta flower 99 52 Borag Tiquilia canescens var. canescens gray coldenia 3 45 11 53 Brass Brassica tournefortii *Asian mustard 1 99 99 54 Brass Caulanthus cooperi Cooper's jewel-flower 18 55 Brass Caulanthus lasiophyllus California mustard 5 56 Brass Descurainia pinnata western tansy-mustard 16 57 Brass Descurainia sophia *herb sophia 1 58 Brass Hirschfeldia incana *shortpod mustard 1 59 Brass Lepidium lasiocarpum ssp. lasiocarpum hairy-podded pepper-grass 1 5 2 60 Brass Lyrocarpa coulteri Coulter's lyrepod 14 3 40 50 61 Brass Sisymbrium irio *London rocket 1 62 Brass Streptanthella longirostris longbeak streptanthella 1 63 Cacta Cylindropuntia bigelovii teddy-bear cholla 99 99 99 64 Cacta Cylindropuntia ganderi Gander's cholla 99 99 99 65 Cacta Echinocereus engelmannii Engelmann's hedgehog cactus 50 10 30 66 Cacta Ferocactus cylindraceus California barrel cactus 99 99 99 67 Cacta Mammillaria dioica California fish-hook cactus 60 20 99 68 Cacta Mammillaria tetrancistra fish-hook cactus 11 2 69 Cacta Opuntia basilaris var. basilaris beavertail cactus 99 30 99 70 Cacta Opuntia phaeacantha desert prickly-pear 20 71 Campa Nemacladus glanduliferus glandular nemacladus 1 ~5 72 Cheno Atriplex polycarpa cattle saltbush 4 73 Cheno Chenopodium murale *nettle-leaved goosefoot 1 74 Cheno Monolepis nuttalliana Nuttall's poverty weed 1 75 Crass Crassula connata pygmy-weed 37 76 Crass Dudleya saxosa ssp. aloides desert dudleya 59 9 25 77 Eupho Chamaesyce polycarpa small-seeded spurge 1 50 99 99 78 Eupho Chamaesyce setiloba starfish (Yuma) spurge 15 99 99 79 Eupho Ditaxis lanceolata narrowleaf ditaxis 1 99 75 99 80 Eupho Ditaxis neomexicana New Mexico ditaxis 25 81 Eupho Euphorbia eriantha beetle spurge 2 40 12 99 82 Fabac Acmispon glaber var. brevialatus short-winged deerweed 99 83 Fabac Acmispon maritimus var. brevivexillus short-bannered coastal lotus 99 84 Fabac Acmispon rigidus desert lotus 3 4 2 85 Fabac Acmispon strigosus strigose lotus 10 86 Fabac Astragalus palmeri Palmer's milk-vetch 1 87 Fabac Hoffmannseggia glauca hog potato 99 88 Fabac Lupinus concinnus bajada lupine 1 17 89 Fabac Parkinsonia florida blue palo verde 1 90 Fabac Psorothamnus schottii indigo bush 5 75 75 91 Fabac Psorothamnus spinosus smoke tree 2 40 20 92 Fabac Senegalia greggii catclaw 1 5 99 20 93 Fabac Senna armata spiny senna 1 5 94 Fouqu Fouquieria splendens ssp. splendens ocotillo 1 99 99 99 95 Geran Erodium cicutarium *redstem filaree 99 99 99 96 Geran Erodium texanum Texas filaree 50 6 97 Krame Krameria bicolor white rhatany 1 35 15 50 98 Krame Krameria erecta Pima rhatany 30 45 20 99 Lamia Hyptis emoryi desert-lavender 1 15 99 50 100 Lamia Salvia columbariae chia 30 20 101 Lamia Salvia vaseyi Vasey's sage 10 6 50 102 Lamia Scutellaria mexicana Mexican bladder sage 99 8 103 Loasa Mentzelia albicaulis white-stemmed blazing star 99 104 Loasa Mentzelia involucrata bracted blazing star 5 105 Malva Ayenia compacta ayenia 2 10 1 106 Malva Hibiscus denudatus rock hibiscus 3 40 5 30 107 Malva Sphaeralcea ambigua var. ambigua apricot mallow 10 108 Nycta Allionia incarnata trailing four o'clock 20 109 Nycta Boerhavia coccinea scarlet spiderling 23 110 Nycta Boerhavia triquetra var. intermedia fivewing spiderling 20 2 99 111 Nycta Mirabilis laevis var. retrorsa Bigelow's desert four-o'clock 1 99 50 10 112 Oleac Menodora scabra var. glabrescens broom twinberry 99 113 Onagr Chylismia cardiophylla ssp. cardiophylla heartleaf suncup 2 114 Onagr Chylismia claviformis ssp. peirsonii brown-eyed primrose 99 115 Onagr Eulobus californicus California suncup 99 116 Papav Eschscholzia minutiflora ssp. minutiflora small-flowered poppy 1 99 117 Papav Eschscholzia parishii Parish's poppy 4 50 118 Phrym Mimulus bigelovii var. bigelovii Bigelow's monkeyflower 3 1 99 119 Plant Mohavea confertiflora ghost flower 1 3 120 Plant Plantago ovata desert plantain 99 45 1 121 Polem Eriastrum eremicum ssp. eremicum desert woolly-star 40 15 122 Polem Gilia stellata star gilia 3 123 Polem Langloisia setosissima ssp. setosissima bristly langloisia 1 124 Polyg Chorizanthe brevicornu var. brevicornu brittle spineflower 4 125 Polyg Eriogonum fasciculatum var. polifolium California buckwheat 70 30 40 126 Polyg Eriogonum inflatum desert trumpet 3 99 99 99 127 Polyg Eriogonum maculatum spotted buckwheat ~1 128 Polyg Eriogonum reniforme kidney-leaf buckwheat 1 129 Polyg Eriogonum thomasii Thomas' buckwheat 1 75 130 Polyg Eriogonum wrightii var. nodosum Wright's buckwheat 99 99 50 131 Ranun Delphinium parishii ssp. subglobosum intermediate larkspur 1 5 46 132 Rubia Galium stellatum star-flowered bedstraw 1 99 25 10 133 Rutac Thamnosma montana turpentine broom 1 20 30 10 134 Simmo Simmondsia chinensis jojoba 4 50 99 50 135 Solan Datura discolor desert thornapple 1 136 Solan Lycium andersonii Anderson's desert-thorn 2 10 92 20 137 Solan Nicotiana obtusifolia desert tobacco 5 138 Solan Physalis crassifolia thick-leaved ground cherry 1 10 9 10 139 Urtic Parietaria hespera var. hespera pellitory 99 140 Visca Phoradendron californicum desert mistletoe 1 1 60 3 141 Zygop Fagonia laevis California fagonia 4 99 99 30 142 Zygop Kallstroemia californica California caltrop 2 143 Zygop Larrea tridentata creosote bush 3 99 99 99 Monocots 144 Agava Agave deserti var. deserti desert agave 1 99 99 99 145 Agava Yucca schidigera Mohave yucca 2 146 Lilia Calochortus splendens splendid mariposa lily 99 147 Poace Aristida adscensionis six-weeks three-awn 20 8 99 148 Poace Aristida purpurea purple three-awn 5 12 149 Poace Bouteloua aristidoides var. aristidoides needle grama 5 150 Poace Bromus diandrus *ripgut brome 1 151 Poace Bromus madritensis ssp. rubens *red brome 99 99 152 Poace Bromus tectorum *downy brome 5 153 Poace Cynodon dactylon *Bermuda grass 30 154 Poace Dasyochloa pulchella fluff grass 2 45 3 155 Poace Hilaria rigida big galleta 1 1 156 Poace Schismus barbatus *Mediterranean schismus 99
Voucher data provided by the participants of the Consortium of California Herbaria (ucjeps.berkeley.edu/consortium/).
We thank Charlie Jones for telling us about the Salazaria here, and for providing a picture to give the Calochortus determination.
Copyright © 2014 by Tom Chester, Adrienne Ballwey, Keir Morse, James Dillane, Jim Roberts, Jeff Field, and Kate Harper.
Permission is freely granted to reproduce any or all of this page as long as credit is given to us at this source:
Comments and feedback: Tom Chester
Updated 26 December 2014.