SEARCH AND WILDFLOWER HOME PAGE     CONTACT US



Helianthella parryi

Helianthella parryi (Parry's Sunflower)
Asteraceae (Sunflower Family)

Montane. Openings, woodlands. Summer.
Mount Linnaeus Trail, Abajo Mountains, Utah, July 16, 2009.

As the map below indicates, Helianthella parryi has a limited range, much more limited than its quite similar cousin, Helianthella quinquenervis, which is found throughout the West with the exception of Washington and Oregon. 

H. parryi stands 20-50 cm tall (H. quinquenervis is 50-150 cm), its flower head is 1.5-2 cm wide exclusive of the ray flowers (H. quinquenervis is 4-5 cm), its ray flowers number 8-14 (H. quinquenervis has 13-21 rays, usually 17-21), and its leaves are less than 10 cm long (H. quinquenervis leaves are up to 50 cm long).

Helianthella parryi is found in most mountainous counties of New Mexico and Colorado, is rare in two counties in Arizona, and, with the plant shown here, is now known from one county (San Juan) in Utah. (On July 31, 2010 Betty and I found the plant on the Mt. Linnaeus Trail. What a nice name for a trail and mountain.)

Just a bit over a year later, Betty and I and Bill Gray found H. parryi about 70 miles north of Mt. Linnaeus in the La Sal mountains of Utah while working on a plant survey with Mindy Wheeler for the Grand Canyon Trust. Specimens from that trip became the Utah state records for this species.

Asa Gray named this plant in 1864, from a specimen collected "in Middle Park, near the foot of Pikes Peak" in 1862 by Charles Parry, eminent 19th century botanist and "King of Colorado Botany" (Hooker's appellation).  (Click for more biographical information about Parry.)

Helianthella parryi

Helianthella parryi (Parry's Sunflower)
Asteraceae (Sunflower Family)

Montane. Openings, woodlands. Summer.
Mount Linnaeus Trail, Abajo Mountains, Utah, July 16, 2009.

"Helios" is Greek for "sun" and "anthos" for "flower" (see Helianthus annuus). "Helianthella" is the diminutive of Helianthus and thus means "Little Sunflower" (even though the flower is large).

Helianthella parryi

Helianthella parryi (Parry's Sunflower)
Asteraceae (Sunflower Family)

Montane. Openings, woodlands. Summer.
Mount Linnaeus Trail, Abajo Mountains, Utah, July 16, 2009.

Helianthella parryi

Helianthella parryi (Parry's Sunflower)
Asteraceae (Sunflower Family)

Montane. Openings, woodlands. Summer.
Mount Linnaeus Trail, Abajo Mountains, Utah, July 16, 2009.

Range map © John Kartesz,
Floristic Synthesis of North America

State Color Key

Species present in state and native
Species present in state and exotic
Species not present in state

County Color Key

Species present and not rare
Species present and rare
Species extirpated (historic)
Species extinct
Species noxious
Species exotic and present
Native species, but adventive in state
Eradicated
Questionable presence

Range map for Helianthella parryi