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Downingia elegans
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Elegant Calicoflower
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Downingia elegans

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About Elegant Calicoflower (Downingia elegans) Downingia elegans is a species of flowering plant in the bellflower family known by the common names elegant calicoflower and Californian lobelia. This showy wildflower is native to western North America from California to British Columbia, where it is a resident of meadows and vernal pool ecosystems. This annual grows on a branching erect stem with many pointed leaves. At the top of each stem branch is one or more flowers, each one half to two centimeters wide. The tubular flower has two long, narrow, pointed upper lobes which are generally rich purple. The lower lip is fused into one three-lobed surface, which is purple with a large blotch of white in the center. The lobes may be quite pointed. There is sometimes some yellow coloration near the mouth of the tube.
Plant Description
Plant Type
Annual herb

Flower Color
Blue, Purple, White, Yellow

Native Status

Natural Setting
Elevation ?
13' - 6527'

Annual Precip. ?
12.6" - 125.9"

Summer Precip. ?
0.20" - 3.82"

Coldest Month ?
26.3° F - 48.6° F

Hottest Month ?
54.0° F - 74.5° F

Humidity ?
0.08 vpd - 21.52 vpd

Landscaping Information
Nursery Availability
Never or Almost Never Available

Other Names
Common Names
Californian Lobelia

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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