Common Name

Scientific Name

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Photo by Ben Franklin
Photo Courtesy of Utah Division of Wildlife Resources

Flat Tops wild buckwheat, Eriogonum corymbosum var. smithii, is a BLM sensitive species that occurs in the San Rafael Desert in Emery and Wayne counties, Utah. A member of the buckwheat family, this plant is a perennial shrub with bright yellow flowers and shiny green leaves. It is unique among the perennial species of the genus in being almost totally without hair. It blooms from late August to mid-October. Most frequently, Flat Tops wild buckwheat occurs on or is closely associated with breaks in the otherwise sandy landscape, i.e., where bedrock outcrops break the otherwise rolling terrain, along the edge of and into draws, up steep mesa slopes, and along their rims. It grows mainly on the Entrada Sandstone and on stabilized sandy soils, but, is also on the Curtis and Summerville formations. It is in open desert shrub communities, at elevations ranging form 1433 to 1859 meters. Domestic livestock grazing occurs within the plant's habitat but does not appear to be a threat to this plant. Also, there is currently some oil and gas development within the plant's habitat, with the possibility that oil and gas development in the area will increase.


  • Franklin, M.A. 2003. 2001-2002 survey results: Flat Tops wild buckwheat, Eriogonum corymbosum var. smithii (Reveal) Welsh. Utah Natural Heritage Program, Division of Wildlife Resources, Salt Lake City. 89 pp.

  • Reveal, J.L. 1967 [1968]. Notes on Eriogonum V: a revision of the Eriogonum corymbosum complex. Great Basin Nat. 27: 183-229.