Endangered Species

Endangered Species

Scotts Valley Spineflower

Scotts Valley Spineflower

Scientific Name: Chorizanthe robusta var. hartwegii

Status: E, CH

A short-lived annual species in the buckwheat family, the Scotts Valley Spineflower is a low-growing herb with rose-pink margins confined to the basal portion of the teeth and an erect form of growth. The
flowers heads are medium-sized (0.4 to 0.6 inches in diameter) and distinctly aggregate. Each flower produces just one seed; the seeds are 3.5 to 4.0 millimeters (mm) long. Hooks on the spines which surround the seed facilitate seed dispersal. The Scotts Valley Spineflower is one of two varieties of the species Chorizanthe robusta. The other variety, known as robust spineflower, is restricted to sandy soils in coastal and near-coastal areas in Santa Cruz County.

Habitat: Sedimentary deposits of sandstone and mudstone.

Threats: Sand mining and residential development are the main threats to this species, along with its limited habitat and small population.

To Learn More:

  • Calflora Database
    Searchable database all 8375 currently recognized vascular plants in California, including 20000 photographs.
  • NatureServe Explorer
    Enter species name in the search box to access a detailed description of habitat, behavior, food, current conservation status, ecological and distribution data, along with citations to relevant management reports.
  • Santa Cruz Public Libraries - Local Resources
    Search SCPL's online catalog for local documents and other information about this species.
  • U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service
    Documents describing protection for this species under the Endangered Species Act. General information about the species as well as plans to protect and help it recover.
  • Species Account
    Excerpts from U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service documents available at the Central Branch Library