Velvety False Lupine [Thermopsis californica Wats. var. semota (Jeps.) Chen & Turner]

Velvety False Lupine [Thermopsis californica Wats. var. semota (Jeps.) Chen & Turner]

Listing CNPS List 1B R-E-D Code 2-2-3

State/Federal. Status -- /C2 FABACEAE Mar.-Jun.

Global Rank G4T2 State Rank S1.1

Distribution: San Diego County

Habitat: Lower Montane Coniferous Forest and Montane Meadows are sometimes frequented by this stout perennial herb. Around Cuyamaca Lake, it is found on Boomer stony loams, usually in exposed situations which are vernally moist.

Known Sites: This San Diego County endemic is locally common in wet, open meadows around Cuyamaca Lake, and the Laguna Meadows, but quite uncommon elsewhere. Old reports are from Pine Hills, and Wynola. An old biological survey report notes a site north of Julian along Farmer Road. Data Base reports are from Laguna Meadow on the east side of Water-in-the-Woods Lake, southwest of Wooded Hill near Verde Ravine, south of a horse meadow near Thing Valley Road, the El Centro Ravine near Los Juecos Road and the Sunrise Highway, both sides of Sunrise Highway just west of the junction with Filaree Flat Road, near Filaree Flat Road 0.75 mile southwest of the Sunrise Highway, near Flathead Flats on the east side of Sunrise Highway, southwest corner of the junction of Sunrise Highway and the road into the Laguna Campground, 0.5 mile west of Big Laguna Lake and 0.25 mile northwest of Water-in-the-Woods Lake, southwest of Los Juecos Road and 0.1 mile northwest of the Boiling Springs Pump, at the northeast edge of Big Laguna Lake, near Sunrise Highway northeast of Garnet Peak, at the Al-Bahr Shrine Camp near Mount Laguna, the east side of Black Mountain (i.e., Lusardi) Truck Trail near Simpson's Ranch, along Highway 78 near Julian, the northwest facing slope of North Peak, north of Cuyamaca Dam along Highway 79 and Engineers Road, Middle Peak along the Middle Peak Loop Fire Trail, south of Lake Cuyamaca near Stonewall Mine, 0.3-0.8 mile northeast of Little Stonewall Peak along Little Stonewall Creek, near Camp Hual-Cu-Cuish close to Cuyamaca Lake, Fern Flat about 0.1 mile south of Lookout Road and 0.1 mile north of Fern Flat Road, East Mesa about 0.8 mile northeast of Dyer Spring and 0.3 mile north of East Mesa Fire Road, east side of Highway 79 near the Sweetwater River and about 0.6 mile northwest of Green River Falls, West Mesa about 0.7 mile east of Japacha Peak, West Mesa about 0.3 mile due east of Japacha Peak, West Mesa 0.5 mile south and slightly east of Japacha Peak. An old report is from the vicinity of Corte Madera.

Status: Velvety False Lupine is slowly declining in San Diego County. It is being impacted by increasing recreational use of Cuyamaca Lake, and overuse of the Laguna Meadows by humans and cattle. Given its extremely limited range, all populations are recommended for protection.

Copyright May 1994 Craig H. Reiser.

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