Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Late Summer Wildflowers in the Manzanita Mountains

Our last Cibola Forest Service wildflower walk took place August 31st in the Manzanita Mountains just a short drive east of Albuquerque.  Eleven people drove south from the Sandia District Ranger Station in Tijeras on NM Hwy 337 to Juan Tomas Rd. (approximately 4.7 miles) and parked near the open gate marking the start of FR 542 that goes to Cedro Peak.  There is no trail, you just walk along the road up one side for half a mile and back the other side half a mile.  There is an arroyo on the east side of the road (probably worth exploring sometime), but today we just walk on the shoulder of Juan Tomas Rd.  Watch out for traffic!

The Juan Tomas roadside in lower Sabino Canyon yields more than 100 wildflower species, most which were blooming after good monsoon rains in August. Indeed, this area of the Manzanita mountains received 6.51 inches of rain in July and August (out of a total of 6.68 inches that has fallen since January 1, 2013). Here is a list of wildflowers found in a compact one mile walk (up and back) Juan Tomas Rd. between FR 542 and FR 252.


1. Amaranth, Green/PigweedAmaranthus hybridus  – Amaranth Family

2. Alfalfa –  Medicago sativaPea Family
3. Apache PlumeFallugia paradoxaRose Family

4. Aster, BabyChaestoppa eriocoidesAster Family
5. Aster, Hairy Golden Heterotheca villosaAster Family
6. Aster, PurpleMachaeranthera canescensAster Family
7. Aster, White HeathAster falcatusAster Family

8. BahiaBahia dissectaAster Family

9. Bindweed Convolvulus arvensis Morning Glory Family

10. BirdbeakCordylanthus wrightii Snapdragon Family
11. Bitterweed/PinguëHymenoxys richardsoniiAster Family
12. Blazing StarMentzelia multifloraLoasa Family

13. Boneset, False Brickellia eupatorioides Aster Family

14. Bricklebush, Plumed – Brickellia brachyphylla Aster Family
15. Cherry, Ground Physalis hederifolia var. cardifolia Potato Family
the flower

the fruit

16  Clover, Purple PrairieDalea purpurea Pea Family
17. Clover, White PrairieDalea candida Pea Family

18. Clover, White Sweet Melilotus albus Pea Family
19. Clover, Yellow Sweet Melilotus officinalis Pea Family
20. CockleburXanthium strumariumAster Family
21. Coneflower, Prairie/Mexican Hat Ratibida columnifera Aster Family
22. Coneflower, Short-rayed Ratibida tagetesAster Family 

23. Cota / Rio Grande GreenthreadThelesperma megapotamicumAster Family

24. Curled Dock—Rumes crispus--  Polygonaceae -- Family
25. Daisy, Cowpen/Crownbeard Verbesina encelioides Aster Family

26.  Daisy, PaperPsilostrophe tagetina Aster Family

27. Daisy, Tall Easter/TownsendiaTownsendia eximaAster Family
28. Filaree Erodium cicutariumGeranium Family
29. Flax, BlueLinum lewsii Flax Family
30. Fleabane, SpreadingErigeron divergens Aster Family
31. Fleabane, Trailing – Erigeron flagellaris  Aster Family
32. Four O’Clock, Narrow-leafedMirabilis linearis Four O’Clock Family
33. Four O’Clock, Wild Mirabilis multiflora Four O’Clock Family

34. Gaillardia, Yellow Blanket Flower Gaillardia pinnatifid Aster Family
35. Gaura, ScarletGaura coccinea   – Evening Primrose Family
36. Gaura, Small-flowered Gaura parviflora Evening Primrose Family

37. GayfeatherLiatris punctataAster Family

38. Geranium, Purple Geranium caespitosumGeranium Family
39. GermanderTeucrium laciniatumMint Family

40. Gilia, Many-flowered Ipomopsis multifloraPhlox Family
41. Gilia , ScarletIpomopsis aggregataPhlox Family
42. GlobemallowSphaeralcea angustifolia.  Mallow Family

43  GlobemallowSphaeralcea coccinea  – Mallow Family
44 GlobemallowSphaeralcea hastataMallow Family
45. Golden-eye , ShowyViguiera multifloraAster Family

46. Golden rod, Few Flowered Solidago velutinaAster Family
47. Goldenweed, Slender /Annual Machaeranthera gracilisAster Family
48. Goosefoot, Narrow- leaved Chenopodium leptophyllumGoosefoot Family
49.  Gourd, Buffalo Cucurbita foetidissimaGourd Family
50. Gromwell, Wayside/Puccoon Lithospermum multiflorumBorage Family
51.  Groundsel, Threadleaf Senecio flaccidus   – Aster Family
52.  Gumweed, Curly-topGrindelia nuda Aster Family
53.  HoarhoundMarrubium vulgareMint Family
54.  HorsetailEquisetum arvenseHorsetail Family
55.  HorseweedConyza canadensisAster Family
56.  Knotweed, Erect  – Polygonum erectumBuckwheat Family
57.  Knotweed, ProstratePolygonum aviculareBuckwheat Family
58. Lettuce, PricklyLactuca serriolaAster Family
58. Licorice, Wild Glycyrrhiza lepidota Pea Family

60. Marigold, Fetid Dyssodia papposa Aster Family

61. Menodora, RoughMenodora scabraOlive Family

62.  Milkweed, PoisonAsclepias subverticillata Milkweed Family
63. MilkwortPolygala albaMilkwort Family
64. Morning Glory, Crest-rib  –Ipomoea costellata Morning Glory Family

65. Morning Glory, Scarlet Ipomoea cristulataMorning Glory Family
66. Morning Glory, Wild Ipomoea purpuraMorning Glory Family
67.  Mullein, Woolly Verbascum thapsisFigwort Family
68. Mustard,Purple Schoenocrambe linearfoliaMustard Family
69. Nightshade, PurpleSolanum elaeagnifoliumPotato Family
70. NoseburnTragia ramose Euphorbia Family
71. Onion, Geyer’sAllium geyeriLily Family
72. Paintbrush, FoothillsCastilleja integra Snapdragon Family
73. Pennyroyal, FalseHedeoma nanaMint Family
74.Penstemon, Red Penstemon barbatus Snapdragon Family
75. PeppergrassLepidium montanum Mustard Family

76.  Perky SueTetraneuris argenta Aster Family

77. Phlox, Santa FePhlox nana Phlox Family
78. Poinsettia, ToothedEuphorbia dentateEuphorbia Family

79. Potato, Wild Solanum jamesii Potato Family
80. Ragweed SagebrushArtemesia franseriodes Aster Family
81. Ragweed, WesternAmbrosia psilostachya Aster Family
82. Sage, Fringed Artemisia frigida Aster Family
83. Sage, Rocky MountainSalvia reflexa Mint Family

84. Salisfy Tragopogon pratensisAster Family
85. Saltbush, Four-winged Atriplex canescens Goosefoot Family
86. Sanvitalia Sanvitalia abertiiAster Family

87. Spurge Chamaescyce serpyllifolia Euphorbia Family

88. Snakeweed Gutierrezia sarothraeAster Family

89. Sundrops, Hartweg’sCalyphus hartwegii Evening Primrose Family
90. Sunflower, AnnualHelianthus annus Aster Family
91. Sunflower, PrairieHelianthus petiolaris Aster Family
92. Sweetpea, Wild Lathyrus eucosmusPea Family

93. TarragonArtemisia biennis Aster Family
94. Tea, Navajo/IndianThelesperma filifoliumAster Family
95. Thornapple, Oak-leafed – Datura quercifoliaPotato Family
96. VervainGlandularia bipinnatifidaVerbena Family

97. Verbena, Spike Verbena macdougaliiVerbena Family
98. Vipergrass Scorzonera laciniata Aster Family
99.  Wallflower, Western Erysimum capitatumMustard Family
101. White Ragweed Parthenium hysterophorus Aster Family
102. Winged Wild Buckwheat-- Erigonum alatum  Buckwheat Family
Some others you may see:
New Mexico Thistle
Purslane spp
Violet Wood Sorre
Wild Mint
Wild Rose
Yellow Flax

The day was glorious as clouds rose to threaten rain. Normally this walk in late August is hot with little shade.  But today, the temperature was in the low 80's.

The sunflowers were stunning as they lined the road. The arroyo is behind these flowers.



  1. Amazing, Vicki. I think I would categorize your plant identification skills as encyclopedic. What a fun outing....:)

  2. Interesting to see how many of these wildflowers have been hybridized for the suburban gardens.
    The sunflowers are so pretty. Always a favorite.

  3. This is certainly soothing New Mexico balm to the New Mexico experience of "Breaking Bad."
    Somehow wildflowers are more inspiring than cultivated varieties. Maybe there's a lesson in that.

    Thanks for this post.

    1. One more episode left for "Breaking Bad" - it's getting too intense for me!!!! Now Walter White is in New Hampshire (although I imagine the real scene is in the Sandia Mountains or Sangre de Cristos).
      (BTW: "Albuquirkie" is really a nice place - but a lot of the series rings true for this town. NM is the perfect backdrop for BrBa)