Locality: Coconino National Forest lands north and east of the Verde River and Dead Horse Ranch State Park, west of Hwy. 89A, and extending south to the area around Rocking Chair Road.
Abstract: The Verde Valley Botanical Area was established to help protect the Arizona Cliffrose (Purshia subintegra), a federally listed endangered species endemic to central Arizona. The area is dominated by the Verde Formation, composed of limestone soils and cliffs along the east side of the Verde River near Cottonwood. It is also home to a handful of other sensitive endemic plant species that have habitats restricted to the same geological substrate. The site is under Coconino National Forest management, and is located north of State Highway 89A, east of the Verde River, and west of the Bill Gray Road (USFS Rd. #761). A number of smaller roads approach the perimeter of the site, and it is crossed by the Limekiln and Bill Ensign Trails. Hiking is of moderate difficulty, and other than the two trails mentioned, is all cross country with little shade except for that provided by scattered Junipers and the dominant Crucifixion Thorn (Canotia holacantha). Most of the area ranges from 3300’- 3700’ in elevation. TheVerde Valley Botanical Area is the site of an ongoing PAPAZ (plant Atlas of Arizona) project, and the area being documented includes USFS and State Park lands adjacent to the original designated area. This is a working checklist, in the process of being documented with vouchers. The original list was compiled from a checklist for the area by Bob Denham, and one for Dead Horse Ranch State Park by Norm Herkenham, with more recent additions by PAPAZ collectors.