Amsinckia intermedia Fischer & C. Meyer

Common Fiddleneck
Boraginaceae (Borage Family)


Common fiddleneck is a slender, erect, bristly annual growing 8" to 32" tall with linear to lanceolate leaves up to 6" long.  The flowers are in a tightly coiled inflorescence to 8" long that has leafy bracts at the base.  The calyx is green, 5-lobed and very bristly, and with whitish hirsute margins.  The corolla is tubular-salverform from 1/4" to 7/16" across, with five orange to yellow lobes. The limb of the corolla usually has five red to orange marks.  The fruit contains 4 spineless nutlets, ovoid to angular-ovoid, tubercled and sometimes ridged. This species of fiddleneck is extremely common in many plant communities throughout cismontane California and occasional on the desert, where it is more often replaced by A. tessellata.  It prefers grassy and open places below 5000', blooming from March to June. Another, slightly smaller relative is A. menziesii, which is not as common, has a corolla only 1/8" to 1/4" wide, is more yellowy than orange, and lacks the red-orange marks.

Click here for Latin name derivations: 1) Amsinckia 2) intermedia.
Pronunciation: am-SINK-ee-a in-ter-ME-dee-a.
Click here for Botanical Term Meanings.
Formerly Amsinckia menziesii var. intermedia