Carnegiea gigantea, Giant Saguaro

Southwest Desert Flora

Home to the plants of the Sonoran, Chihuahuan and Mojave Deserts

Cirsium ochrocentrum, Yellowspine Thistle

Brickellia floribunda, Chihuahuan Brickellbush

Chihuahuan Brickellbush has pale yellow or greenish-white flowers and an inflorescence with clustered small heads, up to 20 or more, note that the florets are discoid only. Brickellia floribunda Chihuahuan Brickellbush; Note the phyllaries are greenish and actually often purple tinged; phyllary shape varies from ovate to lanceolate. Brickellia floribunda Chihuahuan Brickellbush, also call Desert Brickellbush is shrub or sub-shrub that grows tall and mostly erect; plants are woody at the base with stems branching upward; the upper-parts of the plants are often glandular-viscid or sticky.  Brickellia floribunda Chihuahuan Brickellbush blooms late Summer into Fall and Winter; August or September to October; the preferred elevation ranges from 3,000 to 5,500 feet in elevation. Chihuahuan Brickellbush is relatively rare in the United States and is found only in Arizona and New Mexico. It is also native to Baja California and Mexico. Brickellia floribunda Chihuahuan Brickellbush; Note the leaves are green in color, and arranged alternately along the stems. The leaves have short but prominent stems called petioles. Leaf shape variable from dentate-ovate or rhombic-ovate; surfaces often gland-dotted and margins are sharply but irregularly dentate. Brickellia floribunda

Scientific Name: Brickellia floribunda
Common Name: Chihuahuan Brickellbush

Also Called: Desert Brickellbush

Family: Asteraceae, Sunflower Family

Synonyms: ()

Status: Native

Duration: Perennial

Size: 3 to 5 feet (1-1.5 m) tall or more (6 feet - 3 m).

Growth Form: shrub or subshrub; woody at the base; multiple stems branching; upper parts glandular-viscid, sticky, often spotted with purple.

Leaves: Green; leaves arranged alternately along stem; leaves with stalk or stems ( petioles) leaf shape generally triangular, more specific dentate-ovate or rhombic-ovate; leaf surfaces gland-dotted or glandular hairy; leaf edges or margins are sharply but irregularly dentate.

Flower Color: Pale yellow or greenish-white; heads disk flowers only; arranged in multiple headed panicles, 15 to 24 florets per stem, corollas pale yellow-green or greenish-white; bracts or phyllaries surrounding head greenish, often purple tinged; fruit a cypsela with a white pappus of 30 or more barbed (barbellate) bristles.

Flowering Season: August or September to October.

Elevation: 3,000 to 5,500 feet.

Recorded Range: Chihuahuan Brickellbush is relatively rare in the United States and is found only in Arizona and New Mexico. It is also native to Baja California and northern Mexico (Sonora and Chihuahua).

Habitat Preferences: Rich soils of canyon bottoms, riparian areas, near streams; Pinyon Juniper, upper Sonoran desert species.

North America & US County Distribution Map for Brickellia floribunda.

North America species range map for Brickellia floribunda:
North American range map courtesy of Virginia Tech, Dept. of Forest Resources & Environmental Conservation

North America species range map for Brickellia floribunda: Click image for full size map
Click image for full size map

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.

Recorded Range: Rare in the United States where it is found only in Arizona and New Mexico. It is also native to Mexico in Sonora and Chihuahua. In Arizona, Chihuahuan Brickellbush is found in central, northern, southern and southeast locals above 3,000 feet and in New Mexico is occurs in Southeastern corner of the state.

Genus Information: In North America there are 36 species and 36 accepted taxa overall for Brickellia. World wide, The Plant List includes 112 accepted species names and includes a further 136 of infraspecific rank for the genus.

The genus Brickellia was published by Stephen Elliott in 1824.

In the Southwestern United States: Arizona has 22 species of Brickellia, California has 13 species, Nevada has 12 species, New Mexico has 19 species, Texas has 15 species, Utah has 7 species. All data is approximate and subject to taxonomic changes.

Comments: With so many species of Brickellia, Chihuahuan Brickellbush can be identified, in part by its clusters of florets, reflective of its species epithet “floribunda” or “many flowers”; see Etymology below. According to Kearney and Peebles, Arizona Flora, 1960, the Hopi Indians would rub parts of the plant on their head to cure headaches.

In Southwest Desert Flora also see; California Brickellbush, Brickellia californica, Coulter's Brickellbush, Brickellia coulteri, and Veiny Brickellbush, Brickellia venosa.

Importance to Wildlife, Birds and Livestock
Tiny wind-borne seeds of Brickellia floribunda may possibly be eaten by birds and small mammals.

Special Value to Native Bees, Butterflies and Insects
Brickellia floribunda flowers may be visited by butterflies, bees and other small insects.

Etymology:
The genus Brickellia (Brickel'lia:) is name to honor Dr. John Brickell (1749-1809), an early naturalist and physician of Georgia who came to the United States in 1770 from Ireland. The genus Brickellia was named for him by Stephen Elliott (1771-1830), a professor of botany in Georgia. This Brickell is not to be confused with another John Brickell (1710?-1745) from Ireland who came to the United States around 1729, was coincidentally was also a naturalist and physician.

The genus Brickellia was published by Stephen Elliott in 1824.

The species epithet floribunda (floribun'da/floribun'dus:) from floris, “flower,” or florere, “to flower,” with the Latin adjectival suffix -bundus used in the sense of doing or action accomplished, and thus meaning “profusely flowering, producing or having produced abundant flowers.”

Ethnobotany
  • According to Kearney and Peebles, Arizona Flora, 1960, the Hopi Indians would rub parts of Chihuahuan Brickellbush on their head to cure headaches.
  • Date Profile Completed: 10/13/2014; updated 05/30/2020
    References:
    Arizona Flora, Kearney, Thomas H., Peebles, Robert H., 1960, University of California Press, Berkley and Los Angeles
    Plants, USDA, U.S. Department of Agriculture, Natural Resources Conservation Service
    https://plants.usda.gov/java/ClassificationServlet?source=profile&symbol=BRICK&display=31
    The Plant List (2013). Version 1.1. Published on the Internet; http://www.theplantlist.org/ (accessed 05/28/2020).
    http://www.theplantlist.org/1.1/browse/A/Compositae/Brickellia/
    Randall W. Scott, FNA | Family List | FNA Vol. 21 | Asteraceae | Brickellia ; 14. Brickellia floribunda A. Gray, Smithsonian Contr. Knowl. 5(6): 73. 1853. Flora of North America Editorial Committee, eds. 1993+. Flora of North America North of Mexico. 16+ vols. New York and Oxford.
    FNA 2006, Wiggins 1964, Kearney and Peebles 1969, McDougall 1973; Editors: S.Buckley 2010, F.S.Coburn 2014, A.Hazelton 2015Brickellia floribunda; Field Guide on Seinet (accessed 05/30/2020)
    Wikipedia contributors, 'Brickellia floribunda', Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia, 22 March 2018, 00:07 UTC,
    https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Brickellia_floribunda&oldid=831735787> [accessed 30 May 2020]
    Kleiman, Russ, Dr., Associate Botanist, Dale A. Zimmerman Herbarium; Vascular Plants of the Gila Wilderness; Brickellia floribunda Gray - (Chihuahuan Brickellbush); (accessed 05/30/2020)
    http://wnmu.edu/academic/nspages/gilaflora/brickellia_floribunda.html
    Yavapai County Native & Naturalized Plants; Brickellia floribunda; Chihuahuan brickellbush; accessed on-line 05/30/2020.
    Virginia Tech Dendrology; Department of Forest Resources and Environmental Conservation
    http://dendro.cnre.vt.edu/dendrology/
    SEINet synonyms, scientific names, geographic locations, general information.
    http://swbiodiversity.org/seinet/
    Etymology:Michael L. Charters California Plant Names: Latin and Greek Meanings and Derivations; A Dictionary of Botanical and Biographical Etymology - (accessed 05/28/2020)
    http://www.calflora.net/botanicalnames/pageBL-BY.html
    http://www.calflora.net/botanicalnames/pageF.html