Plant Species of the Borrego Desert: Endemic Species

There are 10 species which live only in the ABDSP area or nearby, plus an 11th species (Lepidium flavum var. felipense) if it is accepted as a distinct species. Such species are called endemics or near endemics, and are always fascinating to people since humans love rare things. If you want to see these endemic species, you can see them only here or closeby.

Table 1 lists these taxa in alphabetical order of their scientific name as given in the Jepson Manual second edition (JM2). The geographic range given is first the one in the JM2, expanded with notes.

See Information about the links from the Scientific Name and Common Name.

Table 1. Species Endemic or Near-Endemic to ABDSP

#FamScientific NameCommon NameGeographic Range
1FabacAcmispon haydoniipygmy lotusse PR, sw DSon, Baja CA.
2AsterChaenactis carphoclinia var. peirsoniiPeirson's pincushione PR (e SnRsMtns), adjacent w DSon.
3CactaCylindropuntia fosbergiipink teddy-bear chollaDSon (e San Diego County)
4AsterEriophyllum wallacei var. rubellumWallace's woolly daisynot in JM2, but it should have been. It is a well-defined taxon with a very distinct geographic range.
5RubiaGalium angustifolium ssp. borregoenseBorrego bedstrawDSon (Borrego Palm Canyon, Hellhole Canyon, Pinyon Mtn Valley, all in San Diego County
6BrassLepidium flavum var. felipenseBorrego Valley pepper-grassmerged with the widespread and abundant var. flavum in JM2. If var. felipense is a separate taxon, it is only found at the playa in Little Blair Valley
7FabacLupinus excubitus var. mediusMountain Springs bush lupinesw DSon
8CampaNemacladus twisselmanniiTwisselmann's nemacladusAn endemic if our plants are a new species distinct from N. twisselmannii; otherwise a near endemic
9BoragPhacelia umbrosaColorado Desert phaceliaPR; Baja California; species may not be distinct from P. distans
10ApiacSpermolepis infernensisHellhole Canyon spermolepisnot in JM2. In 2012, Neson defined this species as being only in Hellhole Canyon
11AsterXylorhiza orcuttiiOrcutt's woody-asters DSon


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Updated 31 October 2014.