Family: Asteraceae (A UtahFlora – Compositae) – Sunflower Family
Shrubs; 7.9” to 9.8' (2 to 30 dm) tall
Leaves: alternate; simple; entire; 0.24” to 4” (0.6 to 10 cm) long, 0.02” to 0.4” (0.5 to 10 mm) wide
Flowers: discoid; 2 to10 yellow disk flowers; flower head appears to be a single flower, but is composed of several flowers (a composite). Flowers are perfect, fertile; 0.24” to 0.48” (6 to 12 mm) long
Fruits: achene – 1 seeded with hard shell
Blooms in ArchesNational Park: June, July, August, September, October, November
Habitat in ArchesNational Park: desert shrub and pinyon-juniper communities; thrives in alkali and heavy clay, or in sandy, gravelly soils
Location seen:CourthouseTowers, Windows, Fiery Furnace parking lot, SaltValley, park road mile 16, DevilsGarden, DevilsGarden campground
Other: The genus name, “Chrysothamnus”, is from the Greek “chrysos” meaning “golden” and “thamos” meaning “a shrub”. The species name, “nauseosus”, means “heavy-scented” referring to the smell of the leaves and the flowers.
This family is the most advanced and complex of the dicots. The family is rich in oils and resins and is found in every part of the world, but is infrequent in the tropical rainforest. Aquatic or semi-aquatic species are also uncommon.
Did You Know?
The common raven displays abilities to play and problem-solve that are rare among animals. This member of the crow family is also very vocal, communicating with over a dozen sounds. Perhaps because of these qualities, ravens have achieved a certain stature in both European and Native American folklore.