Carnegiea gigantea, Giant Saguaro

Southwest Desert Flora

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

Cirsium ochrocentrum, Yellowspine Thistle

Leptosiphon aureus, Golden Desert-trumpets

Leptosiphon aureus, Golden Desert-trumpetsLeptosiphon aureus, Golden Desert-trumpets Leptosiphon aureus, Golden Desert-trumpetsLeptosiphon aureus, Golden Desert-trumpets

Scientific Name: Leptosiphon aureus
Common Name: Desert-trumpets
Also Called: Desert Gold, Golden Deserttrumpets, Golden Desert-trumpets, Golden Linanthus
Family: Polemoniaceae, Jacob’s Ladder or Phlox Family
Synonyms: (Leptosiphon aureus, Leptosiphon chrysanthus, Linanthus aureus, Linanthus aureus subsp. aureus, Navarretia aurea)
Status: Native
Duration: Annual
Size: Up to 6 inches tall more or less.
Growth Form: Forb/herb; usually branched throughout, stems thread-like, ascending, smooth or with pilose or glandular hairs.
Leaves: Green; leaves 3 to 5, linear, leaves also smooth or with glandular hair, opposite.
Flower Color: Yellow, bright yellow; showy flowers, 1 or more flowers, terminal or pedicellate, funnel- or tubular-shaped flowers, inflorescence a slender stem, corolla with 5 lobes.
Flowering Season: March to June.
Elevation: 2,000 to 6,000 feet.

Habitat Preferences: Common on dry plains and mesas; Pinyon-pine/oak/juniper woodland, desert flats in California.

Recorded Range: Golden Desert-trumpets are found in the southwest United States in AZ, CA, UT. This species is also native to Baja California and Mexico.

North America & US County Distribution Map for Leptosiphon aureus.

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: USDA lists 28 Species and 41 accepted taxa overall for Leptosiphon in western North America. In the southwest there are approximately 3 species in Arizona and New Mexico, 26 species in California and 0 species in Texas.

In Arizona, Golden Desert-trumpets are found throughout most of the state with few or no records in Yuma and La Paz Counties.

The Plant List includes 26 species for the genus Leptosiphon world-wide. (note discrepancy above).

There are 2 sub-species in Leptosiphon aureus:
Leptosiphon aureus subsp. aureus, Golden Linanthus (AZ, CA, NM, NV, UT);
Leptosiphon aureus subsp. decorus, Golden Linanthus (AZ, CA, NV).

Comments: Golden Desert-trumpets are common almost throughout the state at appropriate elevation. With ample rain these plants may color extensive areas with their bright-yellow flowers.

This species was formerly placed in the genus Linanthus and is still undergoing taxonomic review. Also recognized as Leptosiphon chrysanthus by some authorities.

Date Profile Completed: 05/20/2016, updated 03/24/2017, updated format 09/30/2017
U.S. Dept. of Agriculture, Natural Resources Conservation Service on-line database and USGS ITIS search
Arizona Flora, Kearney, Thomas H., Peebles, Robert H., 1960, University of California Press, Berkley and Los Angeles, California as Linanthus aureus.
The Plant List (2013). Version 1.1. Published on the Internet; (accessed 05/20/2016).
Dieter H. Wilken and J. Mark Porter, 2005, Vascular Plants of Arizona: Polemoniaceae. CANOTIA 1: 1-37.
Native Plant Information Network, NPIN (2013). Published on the Internet [accessed: 05/20/2016]. Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center at The University of Texas, Austin, TX, as Leptosiphon aureus ssp. aureus
1993, The Jepson Manual, Citation: - as Linanthus aureus (accessed 05/20/2016)
SEINet for synonyms, scientific names, recorded geographic locations and general information, as Leptosiphon chrysanthus.