Ashgray Indian Paintbrush

Ashgray Indian paintbrush, scientifically known as Castilleja cinerea, is a rare and endangered species of Indian paintbrush that grows only in San Bernardino County.
As far as can be determined, this plant grows naturally only in the San Bernardino Mountains in roughly 20 spots where it has been observed
A perennial herb reaching a height of up to 15 centimeters and covered in a coat of ash-gray woolly hairs, Castilleja cinerea grows in several different types of habitat, including dry desert and sagebrush scrub, woodland, and at spots within the coniferous forest. It will also grow in the unique quartzite pebble plain habitat in the San Bernardino Mountains, as do a handful of other endemics such as arenaria ursina
The ashgray Indian paintbrush’s leaves are linear or narrowly lance-shaped, from one to two centimeters long. The inflorescence is made up of fuzzy dull to bright reddish or purplish pink internal leaves, between which emerge smaller yellowish to greenish flowers. The color of the inflorescence is influenced by the environment of the plant; those with more northern exposures tend to have yellowish flowers and those facing south have more reddish flowers. The calyx is nearly equally divided into linear lobes and the corolla is yellowish. It flowers from June through August. Castilleja cinerea is distinguished from other species of castilleja within its range by its perennial nature, ashy stems and leaves which are covered with fine short hairs, yellowish flowers, with calyx lobes of equal length
Like other castilleja species, this plant parasitizes other species for water and nutrients; castilleja  cinerea is generally found tapping buckwheats (eriogonum spp.) and sagebrushes (artemisia spp.). When placed in a parasitic environment, the plant experiences increased vigor with more branching, increased height, and earlier flowering
The castilleja cinerea plant is a federally listed threatened species. Threats to its survival include development of its habitat for human use, recreation, off-road vehicles, logging, grazing, mining, and invasive species of plants.
From Calflora, Wikipedia and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s 2013 5-year Review for Castilleja Cinereal.

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