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Sisyrinchium californicum (Ker Gawl.) Aiton
Golden blue-eyed grass
Synonym(s): Hydastylus borealis, Hydastylus brachypus, Hydastylus californicus, Sisyrinchium boreale
USDA Symbol: sica8
USDA Native Status: L48 (N), CAN (N)
Pale-green, iris-like, basal leaves arise from creeping rhizomes which expand the colony year by year. Leaves turn black upon drying. 6-16 in. stems bear clusters of small, star-shaped golden-yellow flowers. Individual flowers last only one day but are produced in great quantities. 1 or few delicate, bright yellow flowers, resembling 6-pointed stars, held above leaves atop a flat stem in 2 broad bracts, generally with 1 flower in bloom at a time; 1 cluster of narrow, sword-shaped leaves near base.
There are only a few yellow-flowered Sisyrinchiums in the West. Two species from Arizona resemble S. californicum, both called Yellow-eyed or Golden-eyed Grass: S. cernuum, found in southeastern Arizona and Mexico, has petal-like segments less than 1/4 of an inch (6 mm) long, with flowers on slender bent stalks; S. longipes, found from northern Arizona to Mexico, has petal-like segments 3/8-1/2 of an inch (8-13 mm) long, with flowers on erect stalks. Elmers Golden-eyed Grass (S. elmeri), which has stems generally less than 1/8 of an inch (2 mm) wide, is found in much of California. Arizona Golden-eyed Grass (S. arizonicum) is a robust plant with branched stems bearing yellow-orange flowers more than one inch (2.5 cm) wide; it grows in the mountains of eastern Arizona and western New Mexico.
Plant CharacteristicsDuration: Perennial Habit: Herb Flower:
Fruit: Size Class:
Bloom InformationBloom Color: Yellow
Bloom Time: May , Jun
, WA Canada: BC Native Distribution:
Coastal areas from Monterey Co., CA
to Vancouver I., B.C. Native Habitat:
Freshwater marshes; low, moist places
Growing ConditionsLight Requirement: Sun
Soil Moisture: Wet
Soil Description: Moist to wet soils.
Conditions Comments: Reseeds readily.
PropagationDescription: Propagate by seed or divisions.
Seed Collection: Not Available
Seed Treatment: No treatment is required.
Commercially Avail: yes
National Wetland Indicator Status
|Status:|| FACW || FACW |
This information is derived from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers National Wetland Plant List, Version 3.1
(Lichvar, R.W. 2013. The National Wetland Plant List: 2013 wetland ratings. Phytoneuron 2013-49: 1-241). Click here
for map of regions.
From the National Suppliers Directory
According to the inventory provided by Associate Suppliers, this plant is available at the following locations:
Oregon Native Plant Nursery
- Woodburn, OR
From the National Organizations Directory
According to the species list provided by Affiliate Organizations, this plant is either on display or available from the following:
Santa Barbara Botanic Garden
- Santa Barbara, CANative Seed Network
- Corvallis, OR
Record Last Modified: 2013-12-23
Research By: TWC Staff