Baileya multiradiata, Desert Marigold
Scientific Name: Baileya multiradiata
Common Name: Desert Marigold
Also Called: Desert Baileya, Many-flowered Desert Marigold, Showy Desert Marigold (Spanish: Hierba Amarilla)
Family: Asteraceae, Sunflower Family
Synonyms: (Baileya australis, Baileya multiradiata var. nudicaulis, Baileya multiradiata var. thurberi)
Duration: Annual, biennial or short lived perennial.
Size: 18 inches or so.
Growth Form: Forb/herb; forms clumps of mounding gray woolly plants covered with dense, fine grayish-white hairs (tomentose), branching at base.
Leaves: Greenish-gray or silvery-green; mostly basal and on lower stems; woolly or canescent, pinnately lobed with linear lobes, up to 3.5 inches.
Flower Color: Bright yellow; large, 1 or 2 inch showy solitary flower heads; radiate heads on ends of naked stems up to 12 inches; numerous ray florets up to 50 or more, disk florets also numerous; fruit an achene.
Flowering Season: March to November.
Elevation: 1,500 to 5,000 feet.
Habitat Preferences: Lower deserts, open sunny areas, sandy and gravelly washes, hillsides, dry soils, common along roadsides. Lower deserts, open sunny areas, sandy and gravelly washes, hillsides, dry soils, common along roadsides.
Recorded Range: Native to the southwestern United States, it is native to AZ, CA, NM, NV, TX and UT as well as northern Mexico. Desert Marigold is found throughout most of Arizona.
North America & US County Distribution Map for Baileya multiradiata.
U.S. Weed Information: No data available.
Invasive/Noxious Weed Information: No data available.
Wetland Indicator: No data available.
Threatened/Endangered Information: No data available.
In the Southwestern United States, Arizona there are 3 species of , in California there are 3 species, Nevada has 2 species, New Mexico has 2 species, Texas has 1 species, Utah has 3 species. All data is approximate and subject to taxonomic changes.
Comments: Desert Marigold is one of the more common yellow flowers over a wide range which blooms for long periods along roadsides in early spring sometimes through the fall. Although found in the Sonoran and Mojave Deserts, however Desert Marigold is considered more or a Mojave Desert species.
Desert Marigold is often used as a commercial landscape plant in the southwest by homeowners and often used as a roadside planting by state highway departments.
It is very similar to Woolly Desert Marigold, Baileya pleniradiata which is more of a fall bloomer. According to Flora of North America, both species can be observed in the same areas and hybrids have not been recorded. I would agree as I have seen many occurrences of each species and characteristics always appear distinct.
Native American Ethnobotany: Baileya multiradiata has been used by southwestern American indigenous peoples for the following;
See species account from Native American Ethnobotany, University of Michigan, Dearborn.