Carnegiea gigantea, Giant Saguaro

Southwest Desert Flora

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

Cirsium ochrocentrum, Yellowspine Thistle

Calycoseris parryi, Yellow Tackstem

Yellow Tackstem has a showy yellow strap-like flower that prefers limestone soils; Yellow Tackstem blooms from March to June. Calycoseris parryi Yellow Tackstem is a smooth, or glabrous, species that has conspicuous dark colored glands of the upper parts of the stem and flowering parts. Calycoseris parryi Yellow Tackstem is a winter annual that is found mostly in the Mojave Desert but also in the Colorado River Basin portion of the Sonoran Desert. Calycoseris parryi Yellow Tackstem has yellow flowers, mostly inconspicuous leaves and grows up to a foot tall. Flowers bloom in single heads or in clusters of 1 or many (20 or more). Calycoseris parryi

Scientific Name: Calycoseris parryi
Common Name: Yellow Tackstem
Also Called: Tackstem
Family: Asteraceae, Sunflower Family
Synonyms: ()
Status: Native
Duration: Annual; winter annual.
Size: Up to 12 inches.
Growth Form: Forb/herb; low, branching; glabrous except for conspicuous dark colored glands on upper part of stem and on the flowering parts.
Leaves: Green; alternate; small, fine almost inconspicuous, pinnatisect into narrowly linear or filiform divisions.
Flower Color: Yellow; flowers strap-like or ligulate; fruit a fusiform achene.
Flowering Season: March to April; April to June in California.
Elevation: About 3,000 feet; below 2,000 feet in California.

Habitat Preferences: Sandy, gravelly soils, sand dunes washes, slopes and limestone ridges in lower Mojave and Colorado (western Sonoran) deserts.

Recorded Range: Yellow Tackstem is found in the southwest United States in AZ, CA, NV, UT. This species is also native to Baja California and northwest Mexico. In Arizona in is found in the northwest part of the state and northwest Maricopa County.

North America & US County Distribution Map for Calycoseris parryi.

U.S. Weed Information: No information available
Invasive/Noxious Weed Information: No information available
Wetland Indicator: No information available.
Threatened/Endangered Information: No information available.

Genus Information: In North America there are 2 species and 2 accepted taxa overall for Calycoseris. World wide, The Plant List includes 2 accepted species names and includes a further 2 infraspecific rank for the genus.

In the Southwestern United States: Arizona, California, Nevada and Utah each have 2 species of Calycoseris, New Mexico and Texas each have 1 species. All data is approximate and subject to taxonomic changes.

Comments: Yellow Tackstem prefers limestone soils and is primarily a Mojave Desert and western Sonoran Desert species.

Yellow Tackstem is similar in size and shape to the closely related White Tackstem, Calycoseris wrightii which differs primarily by its white flowers.


The genus Calycoseris is a combination of the Latin root "calyx" meaning cup; and "seris", (plural of sere) meaning a kind of chicory.

The specific epithet parryi is named in honor of Charles Christopher Parry (28 August 1823 – 20 February 1890), a British-American botanist and mountaineer. Dr. Parry is from Gloucestershire, England, moved to New York in 1832 and studied medicine at Columbia University and botany under John Torrey, Asa Gray and George Engelmann. He joined the United States and Mexican Boundary Survey as a physician and botanist and also made significant plant collections along the United States/Mexico border in California. He later he collected plants in Colorado, Utah and other southwestern states and some of the plants turned out to be new species. Many species are named after Dr. Parry.

Date Profile Completed: 11/17/2016, updated 09/15/2017, updated format 10/10/2017
Arizona Flora, Kearney, Thomas H., Peebles, Robert H., 1960, University of California Press, Berkley and Los Angeles, California.
U.S. Dept. of Agriculture, Natural Resources Conservation Service on-line database and USGS ITIS search - (accessed 11/17/2016)
The Plant List (2013). Version 1.1. Published on the Internet; (accessed 11/17/2016).
L. D. Gottlieb, FNA | Family List | FNA Vol. 19, 20 and 21 | Asteraceae | Calycoseris parryi A. Gray in W. H. Emory, Rep. U.S. Mex. Bound. 2(1): 106. 1859.; Flora of North America Editorial Committee, eds. 1993+. Flora of North America North of Mexico. 16+ vols. New York and Oxford.
1993, The Jepson Manual, Citation: (accessed 11/17/2016),864,865
SEINet synonyms, scientific names, geographic locations, general information - (accessed 11/17/2016).
Michael L. Charters; California Plant Names: Latin and Greek Meanings and Derivations; A Dictionary of Botanical and Biographical Etymology; (accessed 09/15/2017)
Wiktionary contributors, 'calyx', Wiktionary, The Free Dictionary, 7 August 2017, 14:28 UTC,> [accessed 15 September 2017]
Wiktionary contributors, 'seris', Wiktionary, The Free Dictionary, 7 June 2017, 19:40 UTC,> [accessed 15 September 2017]
Wikipedia contributors, 'Charles Christopher Parry', Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia, 30 August 2017, 12:34 UTC,> [accessed 15 September 2017]
Parry and Southwestern California Botany (1811-1885); JSTOR, Global Plants (accessed 09/15/2017).