Plant Species of the Bright Angel Trail:
resin brittlebush, Encelia resinifera ssp. resinifera

See Plant Guide to Bright Angel Trail for an introduction to this page, especially the Introduction To These Species Pages.

Encelia resinifera ssp. resinifera has a very narrow distribution only in Arizona and Utah. It has the second smallest range of the species in the Plant Guide to Bright Angel Trail.


Identification status: 95% confidence. The determination is not 100% since I have not yet seen the plants in bloom; I've only seen the plants with leaves and dried flowers.

The determination rests on:

There are many vouchers of both "E. frutescens" and E. resinifera at Grand Canyon National Park. However, there is uncertainty as to the true determination of any voucher simply determined as "E. frutescens", since E. resinifera used to be called E. frutescens var. resinifera, and many vouchers are only determined to species.

The 1987 Grand Canyon Flora lists both "E. frutescens" and E. frutescens var. resinifera, but the distribution map made by Curtis Clark places E. frutescens var. frutescens only in the Sonoran Desert, well outside of the Grand Canyon.

There are two subspecies of E. resinifera, with ssp. tenuifolia found only along the Colorado River below Tapeats Creek at River Mile ~135, and ssp. resinifera found along the Kaibab Uplift in the Grand Canyon.

From a SEINet search on 28 September 2007, there are 19 vouchers of this species from the Coconino County portion of the Grand Canyon. There are 6 more vouchers determined only as E. frutescens that are likely to be the same taxon, including a voucher from this trail collected by the famous Alice Eastwood. Note that there may be additional vouchers at other herbaria not available through SEINet.

First occurrence on Bright Angel Trail: mile 3.62, elevation 4255 feet (1297 m).

Number of plants along Trail: These plants were quite common along the last 0.11 miles surveyed; at least 20 plants were found in at least 5 different locations in September 2007. There are probably many more farther along the trail.


From 5 September 2007, mile 0.00:


See Resources for Grand Canyon Flora for further information on most of these references. Entries in the second column are either the name used in that source or a page reference. The name is linked to online pages when available. If a given reference does not contain this taxon, the entry is either left blank or contains a hyphen.

Scientific NameEncelia resinifera ssp. resinifera
1987 Grand Canyon Flora NameEncelia frutescens var. resinosa
1987 Grand Canyon Flora page31
SEINet Image PageEncelia frutescens
USDA PlantsEncelia resinifera ssp. resinifera
Flora of North AmericaEncelia resinifera
Jepson Manual for California treatment
Jepson Manual illustration page
Kearney and Peebles NameEncelia frutescens var. resinosa
Kearney and Peebles Page #904
Vascular Plants of AZ name
Vascular Plants of AZ volume: page
Huisinga et al 2006 nameEncelia resinifera
Huisinga et al 2006 page numbers202
Epple Name-
Epple description page #-
Epple pix #-
McDougall 1964 nameEncelia frutescens
McDougall 1964 page #237
Brian 2000 NameEncelia frutescens var. resinifera
Phillips 1979 name-
Phillips 1979 page #-
Stockert 1967 nameEncelia frutescens
Stockert 1967 page #18

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Copyright © 2007 by Tom Chester.
Permission is freely granted to reproduce any or all of this page as long as credit is given to me at this source:
Comments and feedback: Tom Chester
Last Update: 28 September 2007