Oenothera harringtonii - W.L. Wagner
Arkansas Valley Evening-primrose
Taxonomic Status: Accepted
Related ITIS Name(s): Oenothera harringtonii W.L. Wagner (TSN 504001)
Unique Identifier: ELEMENT_GLOBAL.2.154204
Element Code: PDONA0C1U0
Informal Taxonomy: Plants, Vascular - Flowering Plants - Evening-Primrose Family
 
Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family Genus
Plantae Anthophyta Dicotyledoneae Myrtales Onagraceae Oenothera
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Concept Reference
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Concept Reference: Kartesz, J.T. 1994. A synonymized checklist of the vascular flora of the United States, Canada, and Greenland. 2nd edition. 2 vols. Timber Press, Portland, OR.
Concept Reference Code: B94KAR01HQUS
Name Used in Concept Reference: Oenothera harringtonii
Conservation Status
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NatureServe Status

Global Status: G3
Global Status Last Reviewed: 02Mar2010
Global Status Last Changed: 02Mar2010
Rounded Global Status: G3 - Vulnerable
Reasons: Thought to be endemic to Colorado; known from El Paso, Fremont, Huerfano, Las Animas, Otero, and Pueblo counties. There are over 60 documented occurrences, 20 or more are known to be of good viability. However, many occurrences are threatened by weed invasion, roadside maintenance activities, or residential or commercial development.
Nation: United States
National Status: N3

U.S. & Canada State/Province Status
Due to latency between updates made in state, provincial or other NatureServe Network databases and when they appear on NatureServe Explorer, for state or provincial information you may wish to contact the data steward in your jurisdiction to obtain the most current data. Please refer to our Distribution Data Sources to find contact information for your jurisdiction.
United States Colorado (S3)

Other Statuses

NatureServe Global Conservation Status Factors

Range Extent Comments: Colorado endemic (El Paso, Fremont, Huerfano, Las Animas, Otero, and Pueblo counties). Estimated range in 2006 was 15,693 square kilometers (6,059 square miles), calculated in GIS by drawing a minimum convex polygon around the known occurrences. The current known range (2010) has expanded and is approximately 26,288 square kilometers. The species is probably in adjacent New Mexico (Wagner et al. 1985).

Area of Occupancy: 3-125 4-km2 grid cells
Area of Occupancy Comments: The total occupied habitat in 2008 was about 1,052 acres. Occurrences without specific information on occupied habitat were considered to occupy 0.5 acre.

Number of Occurrences: 21 - 80
Number of Occurrences Comments: There are 61 principal occurrences documented in the Colorado Natural Heritage Program database. Nine of the 56 occurrences have not been observed in over 20 years. Fourteen of the 37 occurrences have imprecise location information. The USFS Conservation Assessment documents 25 occurrences (Ladyman 2005). It is likely that this discrepancy in the total number of occurrences is due to the documentation of new occurrences since 2005.

Population Size Comments: Approximately 12,000 individuals have been documented from occurrences, however, 20 of the occurrences do not report the number of individuals.

Number of Occurrences with Good Viability/Integrity: Some (13-40)
Viability/Integrity Comments: There are 17 occurrences with an A or B rank.

Overall Threat Impact: Medium
Overall Threat Impact Comments: Residential development is considered to be the primary threat to the species at this time. Habitat loss due to urbanization, road development projects, and resource extraction activities, especially quarrying and surface mining, is a substantial threat to Oenothera harringtonii. Since several known occurrences are near highways, roadside maintenance activities, such as herbicide use, may impact the several known occurrences that are near highways. Recreational use of habitat is a threat to at least one occurrence at a Colorado state park. Invasion of habitat by non-native plant species is a potential threat throughout the range of this non-competitive species. Two classes of weeds pose substantial problems. Noxious weeds, such as field bindweed (Convolvulus arvensis) and jointed goatgrass (Aegilops cylindrica), and escaped non-native species used for agriculture and restoration, such as sweetclover (Melilotus spp.) and Mexican-fireweed (Kochia scoparia), have both been recorded at current occurrences. Livestock grazing, especially during flowering and fruiting periods, is likely to reduce the reproductive output of this species. This is a significant threat because O. harringtonii relies on seed production rather than vegetative reproduction to maintain its populations. Long-term sustainability of O. harringtonii populations is also jeopardized by declines in pollinator populations. The small size of many populations confers susceptibility to local extirpation from genetic, demographic, and environmental stochasticities (Ladyman 2005).

Short-term Trend: Unknown
Short-term Trend Comments: There are insufficient data to determine population trends (Ladyman 2005).

Long-term Trend: Unknown
Long-term Trend Comments: Considerable habitat loss and fragmentation due to urban expansion, resource extraction activities, and recreational use has occurred within the range of Oenothera harringtonii (Ladyman 2005).

Other NatureServe Conservation Status Information

Distribution
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Global Range: Colorado endemic (El Paso, Fremont, Huerfano, Las Animas, Otero, and Pueblo counties). Estimated range in 2006 was 15,693 square kilometers (6,059 square miles), calculated in GIS by drawing a minimum convex polygon around the known occurrences. The current known range (2010) has expanded and is approximately 26,288 square kilometers. The species is probably in adjacent New Mexico (Wagner et al. 1985).

U.S. States and Canadian Provinces

Due to latency between updates made in state, provincial or other NatureServe Network databases and when they appear on NatureServe Explorer, for state or provincial information you may wish to contact the data steward in your jurisdiction to obtain the most current data. Please refer to our Distribution Data Sources to find contact information for your jurisdiction.
Color legend for Distribution Map

U.S. & Canada State/Province Distribution
United States CO

Range Map
No map available.


U.S. Distribution by County Help
State County Name (FIPS Code)
CO El Paso (08041), Fremont (08043), Huerfano (08055), Las Animas (08071), Otero (08089), Pueblo (08101)
* Extirpated/possibly extirpated
U.S. Distribution by Watershed Help
Watershed Region Help Watershed Name (Watershed Code)
11 Upper Arkansas (11020002)+, Fountain (11020003)+, Upper Arkansas-Lake Meredith (11020005)+, Huerfano (11020006)+, Apishapa (11020007)+, Purgatoire (11020010)+
+ Natural heritage record(s) exist for this watershed
* Extirpated/possibly extirpated
Ecology & Life History
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Basic Description: A biennial or perennial herb, about 2 dm tall, leafy, and with a stout stem. Flowers are white, turning pink. Blooms in June.
General Description: Oenothera harringtonii is an annual or biennial, perhaps occasionally a short-lived perennial. Plants have a stout taproot with one to five stems rising from a basal rosette. Plants stand 15-40 cm tall and support large white flowers with petals that are 2-2.6 cm long. The stems are yellowish-fawn color, usually with reddish-purple splotches. Plants flower from mid-May to June, with five to ten flowers per stem opening each day. Petals are white, fading to pink, and flowers have a heavy fragrance.

Terrestrial Habitat(s): Grassland/herbaceous
Habitat Comments: Oenothera harringtonii habitat is typically flat or gentle slopes in open shortgrass or saltbush communities. Plants are often found on compacted, silty clay soil, but may also grow on rocky, sandy, and silty loam soils. Substrates are often derived from shale and limestone formations, including the Niobrara formation, Carlile shale, Greenhorn limestone, Graneros shale, and Pierre shale formations. This species is known from an elevation range of about 4,600-6,100 feet.
Economic Attributes Not yet assessed
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Management Summary Not yet assessed
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Population/Occurrence Delineation Not yet assessed
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Population/Occurrence Viability
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U.S. Invasive Species Impact Rank (I-Rank) Not yet assessed
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Authors/Contributors
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NatureServe Conservation Status Factors Edition Date: 14Jan2010
NatureServe Conservation Status Factors Author: Martinez, M. TNC-HQ., rev. Maybury (1997), rev. Neuhaus, K., J. Handwerk, and S. Spackman Panjabi (2006), rev. Handwerk, J. (2007), rev. Handwerk, J. (2010)
Element Ecology & Life History Edition Date: 05Dec2007

Botanical data developed by NatureServe and its network of natural heritage programs (see Local Programs), The North Carolina Botanical Garden, and other contributors and cooperators (see Sources).

References
Help
  • Ackerfield, J. 2012. The Flora of Colorado. Colorado State University Herbarium. 433 pp.


  • Kartesz, J.T. 1994. A synonymized checklist of the vascular flora of the United States, Canada, and Greenland. 2nd edition. 2 vols. Timber Press, Portland, OR.

  • Ladyman, J.A.R. (2005, February 1). Oenothera harringtonii Wagner, Stockhouse & Klein (Colorado Springs evening-primrose): a technical conservation assessment. [Online]. USDA Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Region. Available: http://www.fs.fed.us/r2/projects/scp/assessments/oenotheraharringtonii.pdf [March 2006].

  • Ladyman, J.A.R. (2005, February 1). Oenothera harringtonii Wagner, Stockhouse & Klein (Colorado Springs evening-primrose): a technical conservation assessment. [Online]. USDA Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Region. Available: http://www.fs.fed.us/r2/projects/scp/assessments/oenotheraharringtonii.pdf [March 2006].

  • Neely, B., S. Panjabi, E. Lane, P. Lewis, C. Dawson, A. Kratz, B. Kurzel, T. Hogan, J. Handwerk, S. Krishnan, J. Neale, and N. Ripley. 2009. Colorado Rare Plant Conservation Strategy, Developed by the Colorado Rare Plant conservation Initiative. The Nature Conservancy, Boulder, Colorado, 117 pp.

  • Rocky Mountain Society of Botanical Artists. 2009. RARE Imperiled Plants of Colorado, a traveling art exhibition. Exhibition catalogue developed by the Denver Botanic Gardens and Steamboat Art Museum.

  • USDA, NRCS. 2013. The PLANTS Database. National Plant Data Team, Greensboro, NC 27401-4901 USA.

  • Wagner, W. L. 1983. New Species and Combinations in the Genus Oenothera (Onagraceae). Annals of the Missouri Botanical Garden 70:194-196.

  • Wagner, W. L. 1983. New Species and Combinations in the Genus Oenothera (Onagraceae). Annals of the Missouri Botanical Garden 70:194-196.

  • Wagner, W.L., R.E. Stockhouse and W.M. Klein. 1985. The systematics and evolution of the Oenothera caespitosa species complex (Onagraceae). Monographs in Systematic Botany, Missouri Botanical Garden 12:1-103.

  • Wagner, W.L., R.E. Stockhouse and W.M. Klein. 1985. The systematics and evolution of the Oenothera caespitosa species complex (Onagraceae). Monographs in Systematic Botany, Missouri Botanical Garden 12:1-103.

  • Weber, W. A. and R. C. Wittmann. 2012. Colorado Flora, Eastern Slope, A Field Guide to the Vascular Plants, Fourth Edition. Boulder, Colorado. 555 pp.

  • Weber, W.A., and R.C. Wittmann. 1996a. Colorado flora: Eastern slope. Revised edition. Univ. Press of Colorado, Niwot, Colorado. 524 pp.

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