Tongue Clarkia

Tongue clarkia (Clarkia rhomboidea) grows on dry slopes in the Western States and British Columbia. This annual native has decumbent to erect spindly stems 3 to 20 inches in length.

A member of the Evening Primrose Family, tongue clarkia has lance to ovoid-shaped alternate leaves. The inflorescence consists of a few nodding flowers at the end of the stem. The lavender to bright-pink flowers have four showy petals, eight stamens and reflexed (bent back) sepals. The anthers on the stamens have blue-grey pollen. The blade of the petal is rhomboid (diamond-like) in shape while the petal claw (narrow base) is long and bulges at the sides. The petals are speckled with darker shades of pink. The fruit is a capsule containing the seeds.

Tongue clarkia is also commonly called tongued clarkia and common clarkia.

Indigenous peoples collected the seeds which they ground into a flour.

This genus, and flower, are named after Captain William Clark of Lewis and Clark fame.

These tongue clarkia were growing near the headwaters of Burney Creek along the Headwaters Trail at Burney Falls State Park (CA).

 

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One Response to Tongue Clarkia

  1. Pingback: Remnants | The Nature Niche

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