Amsinckia intermedia Fisch. & C.A. Mey.
Family: Boraginaceae
common fiddleneck,  more...
[Amsinckia arizonica Suksdorf,  more]
Amsinckia intermedia image
Max Licher  
Shreve and Wiggins 1964, Allred and Ivey 2012
Duration: Annual Nativity: Native Lifeform: Forb/Herb General: Erect, slender annual herb, 30-150 cm tall (usually shorter than 1 m); stems rough-hispid, much-branched under favorable conditions. Leaves: Basal leaves tapering into petioles 1-6 mm long; stem leaves alternate and sessile; blades to 20 cm, narrowly oblanceolate, bristly-hispid with entire margins, gradually reduced above, the upper leaves linear-lanceolate, 1 cm long or less. Flowers: Yellow, in scorpionoid spikes 5-30 cm long or more, with a leafy bract at the base; tip of spike continues to produce flowers after basal nutlets have matured; calyx hispid, 5-lobed, the lobes linear-lanceolate, more or less equal in size, 3-5 mm long in flower and elongating to 6-10 mm in fruit; corolla dark yellow to orange, funnelform, 7-12 mm long, the limb 3-6 mm wide. Fruits: Nutlets ovoid, incurved, dorsally keeled, scabrous-rugose, grayish, 1.5-3 mm long. Ecology: Found on grassy hillsides, in valleys, along washes, and in sandy or gravelly soil below 4,000 ft (1219 m); flowers March-May. Distribution: British Columbia to MT, south through CA, AZ, NM and TX to n MEX. Notes: This is the yellow-flowered annual borage that matures in abundance in the Sonoran desert after winter rains. Look for carpets of it especially beneath mesquite and palo verde trees in the late winter and early spring. Before flowering it appears as a narrow rosette of ascending, narrowly lanceolate leaves and resembles an annual grass with wide blades; at this stage it is identifiable as Amsinckia because the leaves are covered with bristly hairs. Amsinckia tessellata is also present in the low deserts; the two species are told apart by the nutlets, which are dorally keeled in this species and not in A. tessellata, and the calyx, which in A. tessellata usually has 3 lobes of unequal width, due to some of the lobes being fused together. Ethnobotany: Gila River tribes ate the leaves as greens, after boiling, straining, and refrying them. Etymology: Amsinckia named for Wilhelm Amsinck (1752-1831), an early patron of a botanical garden in Hamburg; intermedia means intermediate. Synonyms: Amsinckia arizonica, Amsinckia demissa, Amsinckia echinata, Amsinckia intactilis, Amsinckia intermedia var. echinata, Amsinckia menziesii var. intermedia, Amsinckia microphylla, Amsinckia nana, Amsinckia rigida Editor: SBuckley 2010, AHazelton 2015
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Max Licher  
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Max Licher  
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Patrick Alexander  
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Patrick Alexander  
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Patrick Alexander  
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Patrick Alexander  
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Patrick Alexander  
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Sue Carnahan  
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Sue Carnahan  
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Anthony Mendoza  
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Anthony Mendoza  
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Anthony Mendoza  
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Dustin Wolkis  
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