Loasaceae: Blazing Star Family

Santa Lucia Stickleaf – Mentzelia gracilenta

Blooms:

Apr–May

Plant Height:

3–60 cm

Flower Size:

Large

Origin:

Native

Habitat:

Grassland, pine/oak woodland, rocky slopes above 200 m

Notes:

This is a strikingly brilliant yellow flower with an orange base to the petals and numerous stamens.  Flowers are 8–18 mm across, borne in clusters or sometimes terminal and solitary. Leaves are simple or pinnately lobed. The common name (so much less appealing than the common name for the family) derives from the ease with which the leaves adhere to one’s clothing.

San Luis Stickleaf – Mentzelia micrantha

Blooms:

Apr–June

Plant Height:

10–80 cm

Flower Size:

Small

Origin:

Native

Habitat:

Open, recently burned or disturbed chaparral, rocky and sandy soils and oak woodland

Notes:

The common name is confusingly similar to that of Mentzelia gracilenta, but the two species cannot otherwise be confused. This is a taller plant with much smaller flowers, the petals being no more than 2.5–4. 5 mm. Bracts are deltoid to ovate, equal to or longer than and more or less concealing the flowers. Leaves are irregularly toothed, wavy or lobed.