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Southern Mule's Ears
Wyethia ovata
About Southern Mule's Ears (Wyethia ovata) Nurseries Show All Photos Agnorhiza ovata (syn. Wyethia ovata) is a species of flowering plant known by the common name southern mule's ears. It is native to the mountains and foothills of southern California and Baja California, occurring the Coast Ranges and Sierra Nevada foothills in Tulare, Kern, Ventura, Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside, and San Diego counties in California, with additional populations in the Peninsular Ranges south of the international border. Agnorhiza ovata grows in many types of habitat, including forests, woodlands, and grassland. It is a perennial herb growing from a thick taproot and caudex unit. The hairy, glandular, sticky-textured stem grows a few centimeters tall to nearly half a meter in maximum height. The leaves have oval blades up to 20 centimeters long which are generally hairy or silky and glandular. The inflorescence is made up of one or more flower heads which may be tucked amongst the uppermost leaves. The head has lance-shaped leaflike phyllaries which may be up to 5 centimeters long. There are 5 to 8 yellow ray florets which measure about 1. 5 centimeters in length, and many yellow disc florets in the center. The fruit is an achene about a centimeter long tipped with a short pappus.
Plant Description
Plant Type
Perennial herb

Max. Height
0.1 - 1.6 ft (0.03 - 0.49 m)

Flower Color

Native Status

Natural Setting
Elevation ?
251' - 9145'

Annual Precip. ?
11.1" - 36.8"

Summer Precip. ?
0.25" - 2.83"

Coldest Month ?
25.9° F - 54.1° F

Hottest Month ?
53.0° F - 78.2° F

Humidity ?
1.96 vpd - 27.06 vpd

Landscaping Information
Nursery Availability
Never or Almost Never Available

Other Names
Common Names
Southern Mule-ears, Southern Wyethia

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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