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Taxon  Report  
Malacothamnus densiflorus  (S. Watson) Greene
Many-flowered bushmallow,   Few-rayed bushmallow
Malacothamnus densiflorus is a shrub that is native to California, and found only slightly beyond California borders.
Siskiyou Del Norte Modoc Humboldt Shasta Lassen Trinity Plumas Tehama Butte Mendocino Glenn Sierra Yuba Lake Nevada Colusa Placer Sutter El Dorado Yolo Alpine Napa Sonoma Sacramento Mono Amador Solano Calaveras Tuolumne San Joaquin Marin Contra Costa Alameda Santa Cruz Mariposa Madera San Francisco San Mateo Merced Fresno Stanislaus Santa Clara Inyo San Benito Tulare Kings Monterey San Bernardino San Luis Obispo Kern Santa Barbara Ventura Los Angeles Riverside Orange San Diego Imperial
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Bloom Period
Subspecies and Varieties:
Genus: Malacothamnus
Family: Malvaceae  
Category: angiosperm  
PLANTS group:Dicot
Jepson eFlora section: eudicot

Communities: Chaparral
Name Status:
Accepted by JEF + PLANTS

Alternate Names:
KMMalvastrum densiflorum
KMSphaeralcea densiflora
Information about  Malacothamnus densiflorus from other sources
Nursery availability from CNPLX
This plant is available commercially.
Jepson eFlora

USDA PLANTS Profile (MADE)

Photos on Calflora

Photos on CalPhotos

Google Images

Photos on iNaturalist

ID Tips on PlantID.net

[Wikipedia] Range, Varieties: Malacothamnus densiflorus is a species of flowering plant in the mallow family, which has two varieties. It is endemic to the Peninsular Ranges of southwestern California and northwestern Baja California. [1] Varieties Two varieties are recognized in Malacothamnus densiflorus: Malacothamnus densiflorus var. densiflorus and Malacothamnus densiflorus var. viscidus. The geographic ranges of these varieties only overlap slightly. [1] Malacothamnus densiflorus var. densiflorus is known by the common names few-rayed bushmallow, many-flowered bushmallow, and dense-flowered bushmallow. It can be mostly distinguished from the rest of the genus by the nonglandular trichomes on the abaxial calyx surface, which are relatively long, relatively sparse (especially on the calyx tube), and simple to relatively few-rayed. The common name few-rayed bushmallow comes from this distinctive character. It is distinguished from M. densiflorus var. viscidus by having sparser nonglandular trichomes on the abaxial surface of the calyx tube and shorter glandular trichomes overall. [1] Malacothamnus densiflorus var. viscidus is known by the common name emerald unicorn bushmallow, which is named after the glandular trichomes that, after drying, sometimes resemble unicorn horns made of emerald. It can be distinguished from most of the rest of the genus by the combination of a spike-like inflorescence and relatively long glandular trichomes. Malacothamnus densiflorus var. viscidus is endemic to San Diego County, California and adjacent Baja California on Otay Mountain northward to near the town of Jamul, California. [1] (contributed by Mary Ann Machi)


Suggested Citation
Calflora: Information on California plants for education, research and conservation, with data contributed by public and private institutions and individuals. [web application]. 2024. Berkeley, California: The Calflora Database [a non-profit organization]. Available: https://www.calflora.org/   (Accessed: 05/24/2024).