Wednesday, October 7, 2015

David Douglas in California, and the type of the Santa Cruz Tarplant (Holocarpha macradenia)

Type stations are vague: many type specimens of California endemic plants collected long ago cannot be attributed to a specific date or specific place.

The type specimen of the Santa Cruz tarplant was collected by David Douglas.  In, 1836 DeCandolle described it as Hemizonia macradenia in Prodromus (“Systematis Naturalis Regni Vegetabilis”), a 17-volume treatise on botany last updated by his son A. de Candolle in October 1873. 

The protologue statements are: “in Nova California legit cl. Douglas” and “v. s. comm. ab hon. Soc. hort. Lond.).  [recall here that typesetting was then manual and abbreviations were used prolifically, but not exactly diagnosed: none of these abbreviations derive specific problems here]. 

There are three specimens of the original Douglas collection, two at Key and one at the de Candolle herbarium in Geneva: barcodes K001079845, K001079846 and G00453655.  All three sheets are attributed to Douglas and to 1833.  Based on the narrative detailing Douglas travels in California (in “California Frontier Naturalists” Biedelman 2006 pages 116-125, the best approximation is that Douglas collected the fall of 1831 and somewhere within a day’s ride of Monterey.  The most probable station therefore being in far northern Monterey County.  One proviso is that H. macradenia is often in peak bloom in September and early October, and the two Kew specimens are clearly in nice flower.  If Douglas had ventured north to Santa Cruz in the fall of 1831, then no mention is given in Biedelman, hence the type station is not very probably directly attributed to Santa Cruz county.  Accordingly, this raises the possibility that H. macradenia might have been VERY extensive in northern Monterey County, and since has contracted significantly. Presently, there is but a singe Monterey County occurrence.  Threrefore, Douglas may have obtained the type somewhere in the vicinity of present day occurrences at Elkhorn Slough and vicinity. 

Based on the narrative in Biedelman (2006) Douglas specifically visited Santa Cruz in February, 1831, but H. macradenia would not have been in flower at that time.

Regardless, the type was not likely to have been collected in 1833, because on November 4th, 1833 Douglas only arrived at San Francisco via Ft. Vancouver, having been away from California.  Douglas had been at destinations other than those in the known geographic range of H. macradenia between March 1832 and August 1832, thence he departed San Francisco for the Sandwich Islands (Hawai’i) in November, then returned again, departing the final time at the end of November 1833.  Holocarpha macradenia has never been documented on the San Francisco peninsula. 

Accordingly, I attribute the holotype to: Monterey County, vicinity “Bolsa Neuva Moho Cojo” [36.80023/- 121.71204], David Douglas s.n. , ±September 1831.

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Plants that merit California Rare Plant Rank Status

Presently, 2345 plants enjoy California Rare Plant Rank (CRPR) status.  Status review for new additions proceeds at a pace of 30-40 taxa yearly.  Consequently, there is presently quite a backlog of newly described endemic plants California region plants that may qualify for CRPR status but which have not been reviewed.  Below I list these, and offer a preliminary recommendation for potential CRPR status.

Merit List 1B (14 plants)
Apiaceae                Spermolepis infernensis G. L. Nesom         List 1B.1
Phrymaceae           Erythranthe percaulis G. L. Nesom             List 1B.1
Rhamnaceae          Ceanothus decornutus V. T. Parker            List 1B.1
Brassicaceae          Streptanthus glandulosus Hook. var. josephinensis M. S. Mayer      List 1B.2
Brassicaceae          Streptanthus tortuosus Kell. var. truei Al-Shebaz   List 1B.2
Fabaceae               Trifolium piorkowskii Rand. Morgan & A. L. Barber              List 1B.2
Brassicaceae          Streptanthus glandulosus Hook. var. arkii M. S. Mayer        List 1B.3
Brassicaceae          Streptanthus glandulosus Hook. var. rachiei M. S. Mayer   List 1B.3
Caryophyllaceae     Silene krantzii T. R. Stoughton      List 1B.3
Cyperaceae            Carex xerophila Janeway & Zika   List 1B.3
Lamiaceae             Monardella mohavensis  Elvin & A. C. Sanders       List 1B.3
Polemoniaceae       Gilia ochroleuca M. E. Jones ssp. lanosa Hrusa      List 1B.3
Polygonaceae         Chorizanthe minutiflora Rand. Morgan & Reveal   List 1B.3

Merit List 4 (14 plants)
Ericaceae              Vacciniumn shastense J. K. Nelson & L. Lindstrand ssp. shastense   List 4.1
Polemoniaceae      Navarretia paradoxiclara L. A. Johnson & D. Gowen            List 4.1
Polemoniaceae      Navarretia paradoxinota L. A. Johnson & D. Gowen            List 4.1
Rosaceae              Holodiscus dumosus var. cedrorum Raiche & Reveal           List 4.1?
Asteraceae           Cirsium scariosum Nutt. var. robustum D. J. Keil    List 4.2
Convolvulaceae     Calystegia collina ssp. apricum Brummitt & Namoff       List 4.2
Polygonaceae        riogonum umbellatum Torr. var. nelsoniorum      List 4.2
Pteridaceae          Adiantum shastense Huiet & A. R. Sm.       List 4.2
Themidaceae        Brodiaea rosea Baker ssp. vallicola Preston            List 4.2
Brassicaceae        Streptanthus purpureus Sanchez-Mata et al.          List 4.3
Ericaceae             Vacciniumn shastense J. K. Nelson & L. Lindstrand
                             ssp. nevadense  J. K. Nelson & L. Lindstrand       List 4.3
Hydrophyllaceae   Nemophila hoplandensis M. Baar               List 4.3
Phrymaceae         Diplacus compactus (D.M. Thompson) G. L. Nesom             List 4.3

Uncertain rank status (4 plants)
Lamiaceae            Monardella australis Abrams ssp. gabrielensis Elvin & A. C. Sanders
Lamiaceae            Monardella australis Abrams ssp. occidentalis Elvin & A. C. Sanders
Polemoniaceae    Linanthus dichotomus Benth. var. pattersonii J. M. Porter
Polemoniaceae    Linanthus maculatus (Parish) Milken
                             ssp. emaculatus J. M. Porter, D. S. Bell & R. Patt.

Reject List (recommended CBR rank)
Nemacladus tenuis (McVaugh) Morin var. aliformis Morin
Calliscirpus brachythrix C. N. Gilmour, J. R.Starr & Naczi
Carex orestera Zika
Arctostaphylos glandulosa Eastw. ssp. leucophylla J. E. Keeley, M. C. Vasey & V. T. Parker
Monardella linoides A. Gray ssp. sierrae  Elvin & A. C. Sanders
Spiranthes stellata P. M.Br., Dueck & K. M.Cameron
Eschscholzia papastilii Still
Abies magnifica A. Murray bis var. critchfieldii Lanner
Festuca roemeri (Pavlick) E. B. Alexeev var. klamathensis B. L. Wilson
Pentagramma triangularis (Kaulf.) Yatsk. et al. 
var. rebmanii Winner & M. G. Simpson
Drymocallis pseudorupestris (Rydb.) Rydb. var. crumiana Ertter
Rosa pisocarpa A. Gray ssp. ahartii Ertter & W. H. Lewis
Cylindropuntia chuckwallensis M. A. Baker & M. Cloud-Hughs
Clarkia tembloriensis Vasek ssp. longistyla Vasek
Spiranthes stellata P. M.Br., Dueck & K. M.Cameron ssp. perexilis Sheviak