California Native Plant Society
Tap map to see plants native to location
Clarkia australis
Please enter either the common name or the botanical name of any native California plant species to see it's plant record

Small's Southern Clarkia
  • Added Add to My Plant List
Clarkia australis

Zoom To My AddressZoom To California Estimated Plant Range

About Small's Southern Clarkia (Clarkia australis) Clarkia australis is a species of flowering plant in the evening primrose family known by the common name Small's southern clarkia. It is endemic to California, where it grows in the forests of the central Sierra Nevada. It is an uncommon species threatened by such forest activities as logging. This annual herb produces a slender, erect stem approaching a meter in height. The leaves are widely linear in shape and borne on short petioles. The top of the stem is occupied by the tall inflorescence, which bears hanging buds that open from the lowest upward, so that there are several closed buds above open flowers. The sepals do not remain fused as the flower opens. The petals are diamond-shaped and sometimes lobed and curling at the tip. They are mottled or spotted lavender, purple, and reddish in color, and each is up to 1. 5 centimeters long. There are 8 long stamens tipped with large anthers bearing blue-gray pollen. The stigma protrudes past the anthers. This species of Clarkia is very closely related to Clarkia virgata, and it has been suggested that it is not actually a separate species, but hybridization studies have demonstrated that there has been sufficient reproductive isolation to produce hybrid incompatibility between the two taxa, confirming that they should be treated as separate species.
Plant Description
Plant Type
Annual herb

Max. Height
3.3 ft (1 m)

Flower Color

Native Status
Natural Setting
Elevation ?
1254' - 5673'

Annual Precip. ?
28.0" - 53.8"

Summer Precip. ?
0.45" - 1.11"

Coldest Month ?
39.3° F - 47.9° F

Hottest Month ?
59.6° F - 73.5° F

Humidity ?
1.91 vpd - 21.87 vpd

Landscaping Information
Common uses
Butterfly Gardens, Bee Gardens

Nursery Availability
Never or Almost Never Available

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

Sign in to your Calscape Account X

Once signed in, you'll be able to access any previously saved plant lists or create new ones.

Email Address

Sign In

Copyright © 1999-2014 California Native Plant Society. All rights reserved.