Non-technical Description:Reveal’s paintbrush is a perennial forb with a single (occasionally 2-3), unbranched,8-15 cm tall, bluish-purple stem.Stem leaves are glabrous or sparsely glandular-hairy, linear to lance-shaped, entire, and 2-3.5 cm long.The lowermost leaves are smaller and scale-like.Flower bracts are magenta to crimson, sticky-hairy, broadly lanceolate to ovate, and entire or with 1-2 narrow, lateral lobes.The calyx is 16.5-22 mm long and cleft into lobes 10-15 mm deep.The green corolla consists of a hood-like galea 7-10 mm long and a lower lip 0.6-1.4 mm long.Capsules are up to 10 mm long. Flowering occur from late June-August. (Cronquist et al. 1984, Fertig & Reynolds 2009, Welsh et al. 2008).
Similar Species: Tushar paintbrush (C. revealii var. parvula) produces more and longer-lived stems than var. revealii, and the stems are mostly green rather than purplish.Var. parvula grows on volcanic-derived gravels at higher elevations in the Tushar Range and Aquarius Plateau in Beaver, Garfield, and Piute counties, Utah.Rhexia-leaf paintbrush (C. rhexifolia var. rhexifolia) typically has taller stems (over 21 cm) and galeas 8-18 mm long.All other Castilleja species from the Cedar Breaks area either have stems over 21 cm long, galeas over 12 mm long, or yellow, red, or reddish-orange bracts (Welsh et al. 2008).
Habitat: Reveal’s paintbrush is restricted to barren slopes and gravelly outcrops of the Claron Formation. In Cedar Breaks National Monument (and vicinity) in SW Utah, this species occurs in cushion plant communities and openings with scatteredPinus flexilis, P. longaeva, or Picea engelmannii.Common associated species include Aquilegia scopulorum, Mahonia repens, Arctostaphylos patula, Haplopappus zionis, Erigeron sionis, Cymopterus minimus, and Physaria rubicundula. Vegetative cover is typically 10% or less (Fertig & Reynolds 2009).
References: Cronquist, A., A.H. Holmgren, N.H. Holmgren, J.L. Reveal, and P.K. Holmgren, eds. 1984. Volume 4, Subclass Asteridae (except Asteraceae).Intermountain Flora, Vascular Plants of the Intermountain West, U.S.A. New York Botanical Garden, Bronx, NY. 573 pp. Fertig, W. and D. N. Reynolds. 2009. Survey of rare plants of Cedar Breaks National Monument: Final Report. Welsh, S.L., N.D. Atwood, S. Goodrich, and L.C. Higgins.2008.A Utah Flora, 2004-2008 summary monograph, fourth edition, revised.Brigham Young University, Provo, UT.1019 pp.
Author: Walter Fertig, Moenave Botanical Consulting, Kanab, UT. April 2017