Dudleya gnoma

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Dudleya gnoma
Dudleya gnoma.jpg
Conservation status

Critically Imperiled (NatureServe)
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
(unranked): Core eudicots
Order: Saxifragales
Family: Crassulaceae
Genus: Dudleya
Species: D. gnoma
Binomial name
Dudleya gnoma
S.McCabe

Dudleya gnoma is a rare species of succulent plant in the stonecrop family known by the common names munchkin liveforever and munchkin dudleya. It is endemic to Santa Rosa Island, one of the Channel Islands of California, where it is known from one single population containing about 3200 plants.[1] The population was discovered in the 1950s and assumed to be a relative of Dudleya greenei, a plant also occurring on the island which is similar but larger and contains the same number of chromosomes.[2][3] The plant was not described to science until 1997.[4] The population is protected from nearby grazing cattle by a fence.[1] It still faces threats from deer, which can get past the fence, a limited gene pool, and the fact that a single severe event such as a drought, could eliminate the single population.[1] Though rare in the wild, this dudleya is kept in cultivation by gardeners and enthusiasts of succulents, and a cultivar called 'White Sprite' is popular.[2][5]

This is a compact plant growing from a caudex topped with clumps of leaf rosettes each measuring up to 5 centimeters wide and containing up to 20 small leaves. The fleshy triangular leaves are green, red-tinged, or white with waxy, powdery coating of exudate. Each leaf is up to about 2 centimeters long by 1 wide. The plant produces an inflorescence up to about 13 centimeters tall and studded with small triangular leaves. It bears up to 10 flowers, each less than a centimeter long and containing yellow petals.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c The Nature Conservancy
  2. ^ a b Flora of North America
  3. ^ Stephens, T. Arboretum helps protect rare island succulents. UC Santa Cruz Currents October 30, 2000.
  4. ^ McCabe, S. (1997). Dudleya gnoma (Crassulaceae): A new species from Santa Rosa Island. Madroño 44 48-58.
  5. ^ Dudleya 'White Sprite'

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