Biennials or perennials; (short-lived); caudex branched; densely pubescent, trichomes (sessile or short-stalked, simple or not), 5-9-rayed, rays furcate, (fine, smooth or finely tuberculate). Stems several from base, erect or outer ones decumbent or procumbent, (sometimes much-branched distally), to 6 dm. Basal leaves: blade obovate or rhombic, to ca. 2.5 cm, margins usually shallowly dentate, sometimes lyrate-pinnatifid. Cauline leaves: (proximal shortly petiolate, distal sessile); blade obovate to rhombic or oblanceolate, 2-4(-6) cm, margins entire or shallowly and remotely dentate. Racemes usually dense, (several-flowered). Fruiting pedicels (strongly recurved), to 20 mm. Flowers: sepals ovate or oblong (tapering at base), 3.6-4.8(-5.3) mm, (lateral pair subsaccate, median pair thickened apically, cucullate); petals obovate to spatulate, 4.5-7.5 mm, (blade narrowed to broad claw, margins sinuate). Fruits (± pendent), ovoid, obcompressed, or globose, compressed, 4-6(-8) mm; valves (not retaining seeds after dehiscence), sparsely pubescent or glabrous, sparsely pubescent inside; replum as wide as or wider than fruit; ovules usually 4, rarely 6, per ovary; style 2.5-3.6 mm. Seeds flattened. 2n = 14. Flowering Jun-Aug. Open sites and bare areas in rocky limestone soil in mountains, roadbanks, open woods; of conservation concern; 2000-2800 m; N.Mex. Physaria aurea (known from the Jicarilla and Sacramento mountains) is similar to 35. P. gooddingii, which is found farther west in the mountains of Catron and Sierra counties, New Mexico, and Greenlee County, Arizona.
Duration: Annual Nativity: Native Lifeform: Forb/Herb General: Herbaceous biennials or short-lived perennials, to 60 cm tall, stems branching from the caudex, erect or outer ones decumbent or procumbent, sometimes much-branched distally, herbage densely pubescent, plants with pungent, watery sap. Leaves: Alternate, basal and cauline; basal leaves obovate or rhombic, to about 2.5 cm long, margins shallowly dentate or sometimes lyrate-pinnatifid (divided into lyre-shaped lobes), cauline leaves shortly petiolate or sessile distally, uppermost blades obovate to rhombic or oblanceolate, 2-6 cm long, with entire or shallowly and remotely dentate margins. Flowers: Yellow, relatively showy, with 4 petals forming a cross, petals obovate to spatulate, 4.5-7.5 mm long,the blades narrowed to a broad claw with sinuate margins, sepals 4, free, ovate or oblong and tapering at base, 3.5-5 mm long or more, lateral pair subsaccate, median pair thickened apically and cucullate, stamens 6 with 4 long and 2 short, ovary solitary and superior, ovules usually 4, rarely 6, per ovary, styles solitary, stigmas entire or 2-lobed, flowers borne in usually dense, several-flowered and elongated racemes at branch tips. Fruits: Ovoid, obcompressed, or globose siliques dehiscent into 2 valves and a septum, compressed, 4-8 mm long, valves not retaining seeds after dehiscence, surfaces sparsely pubescent or glabrous and sparsely pubescent inside, replum as wide as or wider than fru Ecology: Plants of conservation concern, found on rocky or limestone soils in open sites and bare areas, mountains, roadbanks, and open woods, from 6,500-9,000 ft (1891-2743 m); flowering June-August. Distribution: New Mexico. Ethnobotany: Specific uses for this species are unknown, but other species in the genus have uses. Synonyms: Lesquerella aurea Editor: LCrumbacher2012 Etymology: Physaria comes from the Greek phusa or physa, "bellows" because of the inflated pod, and aurea means golden.