Baileya (plant)

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Desert marigolds
Baileya multiradiata flower 1.jpg
Baileya multiradiata
Scientific classification

Harvey & A.Gray ex Torrey, 1848
Type species
Baileya multiradiata
Harvey & A.Gray ex Torrey, 1848

Baileya (the desert marigolds) is a genus of plants in the aster family Asteraceae. All are native to the southwestern United States and to Mexico.[1][2][2]

They are typically annual, though B. multiradiata may be perennial. The leaves, which may range from being entire to deeply lobed, mostly occur in a basal cluster. From this arises several flower stems, up to 18 inches (50 cm) in height, usually carrying a single yellow radiate flower each, although B. pauciradiata may have 2-3 flowers on a stem.[3]

Desert marigolds typically have their main bloom in the spring, extending through July. Summer thunderstorms may enable a second bloom in October and even into November.[4]

Baileya species are used as food plants by the larvae of some Lepidoptera species including Schinia miniana (which feeds exclusively on the genus) and Schinia pallicincta (which feeds exclusively on B. pauciradiata).

The genus is named after US microscopist and West Point professor Jacob Whitman Bailey (1811–1857), known for his studies of diatoms .[3]


As of July 2020 there are three accepted species in Baileya:[5][6][7][8]
Binomial Name Authority Common Name Synonyms Distribution
Baileya multiradiata Harv. & A.Gray ex Torr. (1848)[9] Desert Marigold Baileya australis Rydb. (1914)
Baileya multiradiata var. multiradiata
Baileya multiradiata var. nudicaulis A.Gray
Baileya multiradiata var. thurberi (Rydb.) Kittell
Baileya pleniradiata var. multiradiata Kearney
Baileya thurberi Rydb.
California, Nevada, Arizona, New Mexico, southwestern Utah, western Texas, Sonora, Chihuahua, Coahuila, Durango, Aguascalientes
Baileya pauciradiata Harvey & A.Gray (1849)[10] Laxflower,
Colorado Desert Marigold
no synonyms southeastern California, western Arizona, southwestern Utah, Sonora, Baja California
Baileya pleniradiata Harv. & A.Gray ex Harv. & A.Gray (1898) Woolly Desert Marigold Baileya multiradiata var. perennis (A.Nelson) Kittell
Baileya multiradiata var. pleniradiata (Harv. & A.Gray ex A.Gray) Coville
Baileya nervosa M.E.Jones
Baileya perennis (A.Nelson) Rydb.
Baileya pleniradiata var. perennis A.Nelson
Baileya pleniradiata var. pleniradiata
Baileya pleniradiata var. thurberi Rydb.
California, southern Nevada, Arizona, southwestern Utah, Chihuahua, Sonora, Baja California


  1. ^ Emory, William Hemsley. 1848. Notes of a military reconnoissance, from Fort Leavenworth, in Missouri, to San Diego, in California, including part of the Arkansas, Del Norte, and Gila rivers 144
  2. ^ a b Tropicos, Baileya Harv. & A. Gray ex Torr.
  3. ^ a b Flora of North America, Baileya Harvey & A. Gray ex Torrey in W. H. Emory
  4. ^ Jepson Manual Treatment
  5. ^ Flann, C (ed) 2009+ Global Compositae Checklist
  6. ^ The Plant List, search for Baileya
  7. ^ Biota of North America Program, 2013 county distribution maps
  8. ^ Turner, B. L. 2013. The comps of Mexico. A systematic account of the family Asteraceae (chapter 11: tribe Helenieae). Phytologia Mem. 16: 1–100
  9. ^ Harvey, William Henry; Gray, Asa (1848). Notes of a Military Reconnoissance, from Fort Leavenworth, in Missouri, to San Diego, in California, including Part of Arkansas, de Norte, and Gila Rivers. By Lieut. Col. W. H. Emory. Made in 1846-7, with the Advance Guard of the Army of the West. Washington, D.C. Washington: Wendell and Van Benthuysen, printers. p. 144.
  10. ^ Harvey, William Henry; Gray, Asa (1849). Memoirs of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. 4. Boston: The Academy. p. 105.

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