New Mexico Wildflowers: Phlox Family



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

Tiny Trumpet (Collomia linearis)

Yes, the flowers are both tiny and trumpet-shaped. Look for a ragged crown of them at the top of short stalks with pointy leaves.


Miniature Woollystar (Eriastrum diffusum)

Look for small, tubular, five-petaled flowers (white to blue) in clusters whose bases are woolly and have emerging green points (bracts). All on reddish stems.


Eyed Gilia (Gilia ophthalmoides)

These flowers are tiny—note the size compared to my thumb and forefinger. While they're often described as purple, the ones I found were white.


Bluebowls (Giliastrum rigidulum)

According to an SEINET web page, "[Giliastrum] acerosum ... only has acerose (needle-like) leaves; G. rigidulum has acerose upper leaves and lower leaves with slightly broader segments."  Based on my photos I'm going with G. rigidulum, but "bluebowls" works fine for both.


Skyrocket (Ipomopsis aggregata)

It's easy to imagine how skyrockets (or just rockets) got their name: they look like bursts of aerial fireworks. If you look straight into the flower, it looks like a five-pointed star. As with scarlet buglers (in the plantain family), the flowers hang from wand-like stems, with most of the foliage down below.


Trumpet Gilia (Ipomopsis longiflora)

The giveaway for the Trumpet Gilia is the flower's amazingly long tube. Back up your ID by counting the five "petals" (lobes). The flowers are an extremely pale lavender. 


Many-Flowered Gilia (Ipomopsis multiflora)

In the late summer of 2020, these were common on shady slopes in the Juan Tabo Canyon area.


Santa Fe Phlox (Phlox nana)


Jacob's Ladder (Polemonium foliosissimum)

I use the spacing of the narrow leaf lobes—regularly spaced like rungs—as a reminder that this plant's name is Jacob's Ladder.