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Silverleaf Sunray (Enceliopsis argophylla)
Perennial Forbs Around Las Vegas, Vegetation Around Las Vegas
Silverleaf Sunray (Enceliopsis argophylla)

General: Silverleaf Sunray (Enceliopsis argophylla) is a perennial forb that grows only in gypsum-rich soils. The silvery-gray leaves grow in a clump at the base of the plant, although as the plant ages, new leaves grow atop old dead leaves, forming a "stalk" of live and dead leaves. The large, yellow, and daisy-like flowers grow atop long leafless stalks.

Silverleaf Sunray occurs in eroded, gypsum-rich soils near Lake Mead, which is in the Upper Sonoran (Mojave Desert Scrub) life zone. These plants can most easily be seen along Northshore Road (Lake Mead NRA). They also occur in the Gold Butte region and along the south side of Lake Mead near Bonelli Landing (towards Temple Bar).

Silverleaf Sunray (Enceliopsis argophylla)

Family: Sunflower (Asteraceae).

Other Names:

Plant Form: Basal clump of leaves with flowers on long stalks. The basal clump of leaves sometimes form a "stalk" of live and old dead leaves.

Height: Leaf clump to about 6 inches (12-inch "stalk"); flower stalk to about 18 inches

Stems: None (not counting the flower stalk).

Silverleaf Sunray (Enceliopsis argophylla)

Leaves: Grayish, long and narrow (about 0.5 inches by 6 inches). Thick and smooth, densely covered with short fine hairs.

Flowers: Large, yellow daisy-like flowers, 3 to 4 (6) inches across.


Habitat: Restricted to eroded, gypsum-rich soils. Occurs in Clark and Nye counties, and can be seen most easily near Lake Mead.

Elevation: About 3,500 feet.

Silverleaf Sunray (Enceliopsis argophylla)

Distribution: This species is endemic to the Lake Mead region in southeastern Clark County, Nevada and Mohave County in northwestern Arizona. It can be found near Lake Mead in gypsum-rich soils.

Comments: This unusual plant is often found in association with other gypsum-soil plants including California (Las Vegas) Bearpoppy (Arctomecon californica), Palmer's Phacelia (Phacelia palmeri), and Parry’s Sandpaper Bush (Petalonyx parryi).

This species has been considered for protection under the Endangered Species Act.

Silverleaf Sunray (Enceliopsis argophylla) Silverleaf Sunray (Enceliopsis argophylla)
Silverleaf Sunray (Enceliopsis argophylla)
Stalked plant on typical gypsum soils
Silverleaf Sunray (Enceliopsis argophylla)
Silverleaf Sunray in Gold Butte National Monument
Silverleaf Sunray (Enceliopsis argophylla)
Silverleaf Sunray on red mud soils
Silverleaf Sunray (Enceliopsis argophylla)
Silverleaf Sunrays near Little Finland, Gold Butte National Monument

Note: All distances, elevations, and other facts are approximate. Names generally follow the USDA database.
copyright; Last updated 170915

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