Desert Globemallow (Sphaeralcea ambigua)

On 03/30/2011, I captured this flower on a picture taking trip with my cousin to Grapevine Canyon located just north of Laughlin, Nevada. It was growing at the very base of a rocky cliff. Based upon its hundreds of buds, I think it was just starting to bloom and would have been much more beautiful in probably another week.

Description: Sphaeralcea ambigua, commonly known as Desert Globemallow or Apricot Mallow, is a member of the genus Sphaeralcea in the mallow family(Malvaceae) This two foot perennial shrub contains many one inch orange flowers on two to three foot spikes, the number of which increase with the age of the plant.  The leaves are fuzzy and deeply lobed. The fruit is a brown capsule containing numerous seeds. The flowers are apricot to orange in color and bloom in the spring. It grows well in alkaline soil, both sandy or clay, usually in the company of creosote bush scrub.  Desert Mallow needs sun and good air flow. Though mostly a desert plant native to parts of California, Nevada, Utah, and Arizona, it has been seen in the White Mountains at 8000 feet and growing just above Bishop, California.