New Mexico Wildflowers: Cleomaceae

These wildflowers were previously included in the caper family (Capparaceae). As far as I can tell, the family hasn't been around long enough to pick up an English name.


Flowers are organized alphabetically by genus and species. Hover over a photo series to control the images.

 Rocky Mountain Beeplant (Cleomella serrulata)

This plant was formerly known as Cleome serrulata, and is listed as such in many guides. It's also been assigned to the genera Atalanta and Peritoma. For years I knew it simply as beeweed. One photo shows how the individual flower has four petals.  Except on the flower stalks, the leaves are pointed and come in threes. The boiled-down sap from this plant may have been used to create the carbon-based black paint on some Ancestral Puebloan pots.


Red-Whisker Clammyweed (Polanisia dodecandra)

Doesn't get the admiration Rocky Mountain beeplant gets, but a pretty plant nonetheless.