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Delphinium leucophaeum

pale larkspur, white rock larkspur

Blue Mountain, Blue Mountain larkspur, dwarf, dwarf larkspur, few flower larkspur, mountain larkspur, or mountain larkspur, slim larkspur

Stems

30-60 cm.

unbranched, 10-40(-70) cm;

base usually not reddish, nearly glabrous.

Leaves

blade ± round, 1-5 × 1.5-9 cm, nearly glabrous; ultimate lobes 3-10, width 2-12 mm (basal), 0.5-3 mm (cauline);

margins of basal leaf, measured less than 1 cm from blade base, demarcating considerably more than 90° of arc when leaf laid flat;

cauline leaf blades much shorter than internodes.

Inflorescences

3-15(-25)-flowered, open, ± secund;

pedicel 0.5-3(-7) cm, ± glandular-puberulent;

bracteoles 2-6(-12) mm from flowers, green to blue, linear or lanceolate, 4-5(-8) mm, ± glandular-puberulent.

Flowers

sepals white or light yellow, spurs 9-11 mm;

lower petal blades 4-6 mm.

sepals dark blue to bluish purple, puberulent, lateral sepals spreading, 10-14 × 4-7 mm, spurs straight, horizontal or nearly so, 12-16 mm;

lower petal blades somewhat elevated, ± exposing stamens, 4-7 mm, clefts 2-4 mm;

hairs mostly near base of cleft, white or light yellow.

Fruits

9-16 mm, 3.5-4.5 times longer than wide, ± puberulent.

Seeds

seed coat cells with surfaces roughened.

2n

= 16.

= 16.

Delphinium nuttallii subsp. ochroleucum

Delphinium depauperatum

Phenology Flowering late spring. Flowering summer.
Habitat Rock outcrops, rocky meadows Moist meadows
Elevation 50-100 m [200-300 ft] 1800-2600 m [5900-8500 ft]
Distribution
from FNA
OR
[WildflowerSearch map]
from FNA
CA; ID; MT; NV; OR; WA
[WildflowerSearch map]
[BONAP county map]
Discussion

Of conservation concern.

The range of morphologic features of Delphinium nuttallii subsp. ochroleucum (D. leucophaeum) is almost completely encompassed within that of D. nuttallii subsp. nuttallii. Sepal color is the only feature consistently separating the two subspecies. Were it not for the fact that any given population typically has plants of only one flower color, a rank of forma would be more appropriate.

(Discussion copyrighted by Flora of North America; reprinted with permission.)

Delphinium depauperatum and D. nuttallianum are often found in the same meadows, with D. depauperatum occupying wetter sites, often very near streams, while D. nuttallianum is found in drier, better-drained sites. In typical years, the substrate will be dry around D. nuttallianum plants, while the substrate is damp near D. depauperatum plants as they flower. In addition, within a meadow, D. depauperatum flowers later than D. nuttallianum, so there is normally little overlap in flowering phenology of the two taxa. Although hybridization between D. depauperatum and D. nuttallianum is uncommon, hybrids do occur; they have been named D. ×burkei Greene. Burke's specimens at Kew represent a good series of permutations of this cross and successive backcrosses.

Specimens labeled Delphinium depauperatum subsp. harneyense represent the phase with more abundant yellow-glandular trichomes in the inflorescence and slightly larger flowers. Considerable variation in these features may be found within populations. Presence of yellow-glandular hairs is generally greater in more northern populations. Type specimens of Delphinium diversifolium are intermediate in amount of glandular pubescence.

Often confused with Delphinium nuttallianum, D. depauperatum may be distinguished by its cylindric inflorescences, less dissected leaves, winged seeds, and erect fruits. These character states contrast with the pyramidal inflorescences, more dissected leaves, ringed seeds, and spreading fruits of D. nuttallianum.

Dwarfed phases of Delphinium polycladon may be confused with D. depauperatum; they can be distinguished on the basis of bluish purple flowers, sigmoid pedicel, and prominent buds in the former, and dark blue flowers, straight pedicels, and absence of prominent buds in the latter.

(Discussion copyrighted by Flora of North America; reprinted with permission.)

Source FNA vol. 3. FNA vol. 3.
Parent taxa Ranunculaceae > Delphinium > sect. Diedropetala > subsect. Grumosa > Delphinium nuttallii Ranunculaceae > Delphinium > sect. Diedropetala > subsect. Depauperata
Sibling taxa
D. alabamicum, D. alpestre, D. andersonii, D. andesicola, D. antoninum, D. bakeri, D. barbeyi, D. basalticum, D. bicolor, D. brachycentrum, D. californicum, D. cardinale, D. carolinianum, D. decorum, D. depauperatum, D. distichum, D. elatum, D. exaltatum, D. geraniifolium, D. geyeri, D. glareosum, D. glaucescens, D. glaucum, D. gracilentum, D. gypsophilum, D. hansenii, D. hesperium, D. hutchinsoniae, D. inopinum, D. lineapetalum, D. luteum, D. madrense, D. menziesii, D. multiplex, D. newtonianum, D. novomexicanum, D. nudicaule, D. nuttallianum, D. nuttallii, D. parishii, D. parryi, D. patens, D. polycladon, D. purpusii, D. ramosum, D. recurvatum, D. robustum, D. sapellonis, D. scaposum, D. scopulorum, D. stachydeum, D. sutherlandii, D. treleasei, D. tricorne, D. trolliifolium, D. uliginosum, D. umbraculorum, D. variegatum, D. viridescens, D. wootonii, D. xantholeucum
D. alabamicum, D. alpestre, D. andersonii, D. andesicola, D. antoninum, D. bakeri, D. barbeyi, D. basalticum, D. bicolor, D. brachycentrum, D. californicum, D. cardinale, D. carolinianum, D. decorum, D. distichum, D. elatum, D. exaltatum, D. geraniifolium, D. geyeri, D. glareosum, D. glaucescens, D. glaucum, D. gracilentum, D. gypsophilum, D. hansenii, D. hesperium, D. hutchinsoniae, D. inopinum, D. lineapetalum, D. luteum, D. madrense, D. menziesii, D. multiplex, D. newtonianum, D. novomexicanum, D. nudicaule, D. nuttallianum, D. nuttallii, D. parishii, D. parryi, D. patens, D. polycladon, D. purpusii, D. ramosum, D. recurvatum, D. robustum, D. sapellonis, D. scaposum, D. scopulorum, D. stachydeum, D. sutherlandii, D. treleasei, D. tricorne, D. trolliifolium, D. uliginosum, D. umbraculorum, D. variegatum, D. viridescens, D. wootonii, D. xantholeucum
Synonyms D. menziesii var. (ß) ochroleucum, D. leucophaeum D. cyanoreios, D. diversifolium, D. diversifolium subsp. harneyense
Name authority (Nuttall) M. J. Warnock: Phytologia 78: 98. (1995) Nuttall: in J. Torrey & A. Gray, Fl. N. Amer. 1: 33. (1838)
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