Dalea nana Torr. ex A. Gray
Family: Fabaceae
dwarf prairie clover,  more...
Dalea nana image
Frankie Coburn  
Martin and Hutchins 1980, Correll and Johnston 1970
Duration: Perennial Nativity: Native Lifeform: Forb/Herb General: Perennial herb, 5-20 cm tall, from a taproot and a slightly woody base; stems branching at the base, sometimes decumbent at the base but more often ascending to erect; herbage silky-canescent. Leaves: Alternate and pinnately compund, 2-3 cm long, with 3-9 leaflets per leaf; leaflets 5-10 mm long, obovate to oblanceolate, silky-canescent on both surfaces, sometimes obscurely gland-dotted on lower surface. Flowers: Yellow and fading to blue-purple, in ovoid to oblong spikes, 1-3 cm long and 1-2 cm wide, at branch tips; flowers about 1 cm long, with pea-flower morphology (papilionaceous), with a wide upper petal called the banner, two smaller lateral petals called the wings, and a boat-shaped lower petal called the keel which contains the style and stamens. Petals yellow when fresh and fading to a blue-purple or rose color as they dry; sepals 5, long-hairy, united at the base into a tube 3 mm long, this topped with 5 awn-tipped teeth which are longer than the tube. Fruits: Pods villous, small, and contained within the persistent hairy calyx; containing 1 or 2 seeds. Ecology: Found on dry soils in woodlands, grasslands and scrub from 3,500-5,500 ft (1067-1676 m); flowers May-September. Distribution: AZ, s NM, s TX; south to n MEX. Notes: A variable species depending on which variety you are looking at. In general distinguished by being a perennial with multiple erect-ascending stems from a single base and taproot; leaves and stems with dense, long, silky appressed silvery hairs giving the plant a gray-green appearance; usually 5 acute to obtuse leaflets per leaf; inflorescence 10-15 mm wide with yellow flowers turning orange and then purple after polination. Var. nana is the more common variety with gray-hairy leaves, while var. carnescens is distinguished by having green leaflets that are glabrate (mostly lacking hairs) on the upper surface. Ethnobotany: Used as a strengthener for weak children. Etymology: Dalea is named for Samuel Dale (1659-1739) an English physician and botanist; nana comes from the Greek nannos for dwarf. Editor: SBuckley 2010, FSCoburn 2015, AHazelton 2017
Dalea nana image
Frankie Coburn  
Dalea nana image
Max Licher  
Dalea nana image
Russ Kleinman  
Dalea nana image
Max Licher  
Dalea nana image
Russ Kleinman  
Dalea nana image
Russ Kleinman  
Dalea nana image
Frankie Coburn  
Dalea nana image
Russ Kleinman  
Dalea nana image
Russ Kleinman  
Dalea nana image
Russ Kleinman  
Dalea nana image
Sue Carnahan  
Dalea nana image
Sue Carnahan  
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image
Dalea nana image