Index of Species Information

SPECIES:  Delphinium bicolor


SPECIES: Delphinium bicolor
AUTHORSHIP AND CITATION : Matthews, Robin F. 1993. Delphinium bicolor. In: Fire Effects Information System, [Online]. U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station, Fire Sciences Laboratory (Producer). Available: [].

ABBREVIATION : DELBIC SYNONYMS : NO-ENTRY SCS PLANT CODE : DEBI COMMON NAMES : low larkspur little larkspur montane larkspur TAXONOMY : The currently accepted scientific name of low larkspur is Delphinium bicolor Nutt. It is in the family Ranunculaceae [5,8,9,10,12]. There are no recognized subspecies, varieties, or forms. LIFE FORM : Forb FEDERAL LEGAL STATUS : No special status OTHER STATUS : NO-ENTRY


SPECIES: Delphinium bicolor
GENERAL DISTRIBUTION : Low larkspur is distributed from Alberta and Saskatchewan south through northeastern Washington, Idaho, Montana, western North Dakota, western South Dakota, western Nebraska, and Wyoming [8,9,10,12]. ECOSYSTEMS : FRES20 Douglas-fir FRES21 Ponderosa pine FRES23 Fir - spruce FRES29 Sagebrush FRES34 Chaparral - mountain shrub FRES35 Pinyon - juniper FRES36 Mountain grasslands FRES37 Mountain meadows FRES38 Plains grasslands FRES44 Alpine STATES : ID MT NE ND SD WA WY AB SK BLM PHYSIOGRAPHIC REGIONS : 5 Columbia Plateau 8 Northern Rocky Mountains 9 Middle Rocky Mountains 10 Wyoming Basin 13 Rocky Mountain Piedmont 15 Black Hills Uplift 16 Upper Missouri Basin and Broken Lands KUCHLER PLANT ASSOCIATIONS : K011 Western ponderosa forest K012 Douglas-fir forest K015 Western spruce - fir forest K016 Eastern ponderosa forest K017 Black Hills pine forest K023 Juniper - pinyon woodland K024 Juniper steppe woodland K037 Mountain-mahogany - oak scrub K052 Alpine meadows and barren K055 Sagebrush steppe K056 Wheatgrass - needlegrass shrubsteppe K063 Foothills prairie K064 Grama - needlegrass - wheatgrass K066 Wheatgrass - needlegrass SAF COVER TYPES : 206 Engelmann spruce - subalpine fir 210 Interior Douglas-fir 220 Rocky Mountain juniper 237 Interior ponderosa pine SRM (RANGELAND) COVER TYPES : NO-ENTRY HABITAT TYPES AND PLANT COMMUNITIES : NO-ENTRY


SPECIES: Delphinium bicolor
IMPORTANCE TO LIVESTOCK AND WILDLIFE : Low larkspur is utilized by elk, mule deer, white-tailed deer, pronghorn, upland game birds, small nongame birds, and small mammals [4]. Low larkspur is very poisonous to cattle [12]. PALATABILITY : The palatibility of low larkspur is rated fair for sheep and poor to fair for cattle and horses [4]. NUTRITIONAL VALUE : Low larkspur is poor in protein and energy value [4]. COVER VALUE : Low larkspur provides fair cover for small nongame birds and small mammals [4]. VALUE FOR REHABILITATION OF DISTURBED SITES : NO-ENTRY OTHER USES AND VALUES : Larkspur species are cultivated as ornamentals [3]. Crushed larkspurs were used by Native Americans for controlling lice and other insects [17]. OTHER MANAGEMENT CONSIDERATIONS : Low larkspur is toxic to cattle and causes some losses in the spring and early summer. However, it dries rapidly and senesces after seed set. It is, therefore, probably safe to graze after seed set [3,14,17,18]. Low larkspur is less toxic and more palatable to sheep than cattle. It is considered fairly good forage for sheep [3,18]. Low larkspur increases in response to grazing [20].


SPECIES: Delphinium bicolor
GENERAL BOTANICAL CHARACTERISTICS : Low larkspur is a native, perennial forb with an extensively branched fibrous to slightly fleshy root system. Stems are usually solitary and are 4 to 16 inches (10-40 cm) tall. Fruits are many-seeded follicles. Seeds are irregularly winged and about 0.08 inches (0.2 cm) long [8,9,10,12]. RAUNKIAER LIFE FORM : Geophyte REGENERATION PROCESSES : Low larkspur mainly reproduces by seed [17]. It is pollinated by bees, and probably self-pollinates as well [1]. Low larkspur may reproduce vegetatively [4]. SITE CHARACTERISTICS : Low larkspur is found on sites ranging from open woods and grasslands to subalpine scree [5,9,10,12]. It appears early in the spring, often at the edges of receding snowbanks [3,18]. Low larkspur will grow in fairly dry to moist conditions [3,4,18]. It grows best in rich, black, sandy loams or clay loams and in soils of limestone or granitic origin [3,4]. It is found on gentle to steep slopes. Low larkspur is found at elevations of 4,600 to 11,600 feet (1,400-3,500 m) in Wyoming and 3,000 to 10,500 feet (900-3,200 m) in Montana [4]. SUCCESSIONAL STATUS : Facultative Seral Species Low larkspur prefers sites with full sun exposure [18]. It colonizes recently disturbed sites [4] and is often found on gravel banks and along roadcuts [8]. On alpine tundra sites of the Beartooth Plateau, Montana, low larkspur is associated with natural ground disturbance, such as areas of rodent activity [1]. SEASONAL DEVELOPMENT : Low larkspur begins growth as soon as snow melts in the spring. It flowers from June to July [17].


SPECIES: Delphinium bicolor
FIRE ECOLOGY OR ADAPTATIONS : Information on adaptations of low larkspur for survival following fire is not available in the literature. Larkspur species seeds may survive in the soil seedbank [18]. If low larkspur reproduces vegetatively [4], it may sprout after fire. POSTFIRE REGENERATION STRATEGY : Secondary colonizer - off-site seed Ground residual colonizer (on-site, initial community)


SPECIES: Delphinium bicolor
IMMEDIATE FIRE EFFECT ON PLANT : Low larkspur is probably killed by most fires. DISCUSSION AND QUALIFICATION OF FIRE EFFECT : NO-ENTRY PLANT RESPONSE TO FIRE : Information regarding the response of low larkspur following fire is lacking in available literature. Low larkspur was present in postfire years 1 and 3 following an August wildfire in ponderosa pine (Pinus ponderosa) stands in Idaho [13]. DISCUSSION AND QUALIFICATION OF PLANT RESPONSE : NO-ENTRY FIRE MANAGEMENT CONSIDERATIONS : NO-ENTRY


SPECIES: Delphinium bicolor
REFERENCES : 1. Bauer, Paul J. 1983. Bumblebee pollination relationships on the Beartooth Plateau tundra of southern Montana. American Journal of Botany. 70(1): 134-144. [12962] 2. Bernard, Stephen R.; Brown, Kenneth F. 1977. Distribution of mammals, reptiles, and amphibians by BLM physiographic regions and A.W. Kuchler's associations for the eleven western states. Tech. Note 301. Denver, CO: U.S. Department of the Interior, Bureau of Land Management. 169 p. [434] 3. Dayton, William A. 1960. Notes on western range forbs: Equisetaceae through Fumariaceae. Agric. Handb. 161. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service. 254 p. [767] 4. Dittberner, Phillip L.; Olson, Michael R. 1983. The plant information network (PIN) data base: Colorado, Montana, North Dakota, Utah, and Wyoming. FWS/OBS-83/86. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of the Interior, Fish and Wildlife Service. 786 p. [806] 5. Dorn, Robert D. 1988. Vascular plants of Wyoming. Cheyenne, WY: Mountain West Publishing. 340 p. [6129] 6. Eyre, F. H., ed. 1980. Forest cover types of the United States and Canada. Washington, DC: Society of American Foresters. 148 p. [905] 7. Garrison, George A.; Bjugstad, Ardell J.; Duncan, Don A.; [and others]. 1977. Vegetation and environmental features of forest and range ecosystems. Agric. Handb. 475. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service. 68 p. [998] 8. Great Plains Flora Association. 1986. Flora of the Great Plains. Lawrence, KS: University Press of Kansas. 1392 p. [1603] 9. Hitchcock, C. Leo; Cronquist, Arthur. 1964. Vascular plants of the Pacific Northwest. Part 2: Salicaceae to Saxifragaceae. Seattle, WA: University of Washington Press. 597 p. [1166] 10. Hitchcock, C. Leo; Cronquist, Arthur. 1973. Flora of the Pacific Northwest. Seattle, WA: University of Washington Press. 730 p. [1168] 11. Kuchler, A. W. 1964. Manual to accompany the map of potential vegetation of the conterminous United States. Special Publication No. 36. New York: American Geographical Society. 77 p. [1384] 12. Lackschewitz, Klaus. 1991. Vascular plants of west-central Montana--identification guidebook. Gen. Tech. Rep. INT-227. Ogden, UT: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Intermountain Research Station. 648 p. [13798] 13. Merrill, Evelyn H.; Mayland, Henry F.; Peek, James M. 1980. Effects of a fall wildfire on herbacious vegetation on xeric sites in the Selway-Bitterroot Wilderness, Idaho. Journal of Range Management. 33(5): 363-367. [1642] 14. Ralphs, M.H.; Olsen, J.D.; Pfister, J.A.; Manners, G.D. 1988. Plant-animal interactions in larkspur poisoning in cattle. Journal of Animal Science. 66(9): 2334-2342. [6634] 15. Raunkiaer, C. 1934. The life forms of plants and statistical plant geography. Oxford: Clarendon Press. 632 p. [2843] 16. Stickney, Peter F. 1989. Seral origin of species originating in northern Rocky Mountain forests. Unpublished draft on file at: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Intermountain Research Station, Fire Sciences Laboratory, Missoula, MT; RWU 4403 files. 7 p. [20090] 17. Stubbendieck, J.; Hatch, Stephan L.; Hirsch, Kathie J. 1986. North American range plants. 3rd ed. Lincoln, NE: University of Nebraska Press. 465 p. [2270] 18. U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service. 1937. Range plant handbook. Washington, DC. 532 p. [2387] 19. U.S. Department of Agriculture, Soil Conservation Service. 1982. National list of scientific plant names. Vol. 1. List of plant names. SCS-TP-159. Washington, DC. 416 p. [11573] 20. Wambolt, Carl. 1981. Montana range plants: Common and scientific names. Bulletin 355. Bozeman, MT: Montana State University, Cooperative Extension Service. 27 p. [2450]

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