Synonym: Cymopterus montanum var. purpurascens
Family: Apiaceae (A Utah Flora - Umbelliferae) - Carrot or Parsley Family
Perennial herbs from a tuberous root; 2” to 6” (5 to 15 cm) tall
Leaves: basal; compound; blades 0.48” to 2.8” (1.2 to 7 cm) long
Flowers: inflorescence of compound umbels; 5 white or pinkish to purplish petals with a green or purple midvein; 4 to 7 rays, rarely longer than 0.4" (1 cm) and mostly shorter than the involucre (the whitish papery bracts surrounding them); white filaments; purple anthers; 5 white or purple stamens
Fruits: schizocarp; fruit 0.24” to 0.44” (6 to 11 mm) long, the wings 0.36” to 0.64” (9 to 16 mm) long; and 0.12” to 0.26” (3 to 6.5 mm) wide
Blooms in Arches National Park: March, April
Habitat in Arches National Park: desert shrub, pinyon-juniper, and sagebrush communities
Location seen: Cache Valley
Other: The genus name, “Cymopterus”, is from the Greek “cyma” which means “wave” and “pteron” which means “wing”, referring to its fruit. The species name, “purpurascens”, means “becoming purple”.
The family has economic importance because it contains numerous food plants, condiments, ornamentals. There are also poisonous species. Tuberous roots. The family identification depends on anatomical details of fruits and seeds.
Often confused with Cymopterus bulbosus, which has the rays surpassing the involucre.
Did You Know?
Landscape Arch is the longest arch in Arches National Park, measuring 306 feet from base to base. In 1991, a massive slab of rock fell from its underside, resulting in an even thinner ribbon of rock.