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San Diego Thornmint Back to Plant Page
Acanthomintha ilicifolia

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About San Diego Thornmint (Acanthomintha ilicifolia) Acanthomintha ilicifolia, known by the common name San Diego thornmint, is a rare species of flowering plant in the mint family. It is native to Baja California and San Diego County, California, where it is a resident of the chaparral and coastal sage scrub plant communities and vernal pools. Acanthomintha ilicifolia has been extirpated from many of the sites where it was previously noted in San Diego County. It is a federally listed threatened species in the United States. This species is also listed as endangered under the California Endangered Species Act which means that killing or possessing the plants is prohibited within California unless authorized by the California Department of Fish and Game. Acanthomintha ilicifolia is a petite annual herb growing up to about 15 centimeters in maximum height. It has rounded to oval serrated leaves up to 1. 5 centimeters long. The inflorescence is a cluster of flowers with oval-shaped bracts nearly a centimeter long which are edged with long spines. Each flower is about a centimeter wide and white, often tinted purple to pink, with a hooded upper lip and a slightly longer lower lip.
Plant Description
Plant Type
Annual herb

Max. Height
1.9 - 5.9 in (4.8 - 15 cm)

Flower Color
White, Purple, Pink

Native Status
Natural Setting
Elevation ?
12' - 3260'

Annual Precip. ?
8.2" - 28.4"

Summer Precip. ?
0.22" - 1.00"

Coldest Month ?
46.1° F - 55.8° F

Hottest Month ?
68.2° F - 78.8° F

Humidity ?
1.34 vpd - 26.92 vpd

Landscaping Information
Nursery Availability
Never or Almost Never Available

Other Names
Common Names
San Diego Thorn-mint

Sources include: Wikipedia. All text shown in the "About" section of these pages is available under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License. Plant observation data provided by the participants of the California Consortia of Herbaria, Sunset information provided by Jepson Flora Project. Propogation from seed information provided by the Santa Barbara Botanical Garden from "Seed Propagation of Native California Plants" by Dara E. Emery. Sources of plant photos include CalPhotos, Wikimedia Commons, and independent plant photographers who have agreed to share their images with Calscape. Other general sources of information include Calflora, CNPS Manual of Vegetation Online, Jepson Flora Project, Las Pilitas, Theodore Payne, Tree of Life, The Xerces Society, and information provided by CNPS volunteer editors, with special thanks to Don Rideout. Climate data used in creation of plant range maps is from PRISM Climate Group, Oregon State University, using 30 year (1981-2010) annual "normals" at an 800 meter spatial resolution.

Links:   Jepson eFlora Taxon Page  CalPhotos  Wikipedia  Calflora

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