Mark Egger > Collections

This collection contains one Album for each of the Castilleja species and varieties I've seen and photographed in the wild during my research on the genus over the last 35 years. You will find here often extensive photo Albums of every described form of Castilleja in North America north of Mexico, as well as most of the species known from Mexico and Central and South America and a few from the small group of closely-related species found in northern Asia. For some species I have not seen in life, I've included photos of the nomenclatural type specimens and other representative herbarium specimens I've photographed and annotated in the course of my research. All the Castilleja species of Mexico are now represented here by either an album of live plant photos or type specimen photos. This is a still a work in progress, both in terms of on-going photo shoots and of upgrading existing photos from my collection. See my profile for additional details.

NOTE: there is also text commentary about each species when you first open its Album, including information on range, identification, taxonomic issues, etc. Some of these need updating, as I've been posting continuously on Flickr for over 10 years...

If you just want to get a feel for a particular species, I recommend opening the Album for that species and viewing the images as a slideshow, if possible on a larger, cinema-style monitor, preferably in a darkened room. This is how I intended this photo-site to be appreciated. I'd also recommend using the manual advance on the slideshow, so that you can check the locations of the populations shown. For many of the species, the photos within the Album are from multiple populations, often from widely separated locations. One of these days I'll organize the sets by location, but the locations are given for all photos, at least approximately, in the image text block. These images are intended for your viewing enjoyment and education about native plants in general and about Castilleja and its relatives in particular.

Some of you may notice that I use "var." (variety) to name the significant scientifically-based variations within a particular species, instead of "subsp." (subspecies) used in some botanical references, noteably "The Jepson Manual" (1993, 2012) for the California flora. This is because I am attempting to establish a uniform nomenclature for the entire genus, based on the use of varieties over subspecies. Such variations within Castilleja species have been a source of nomenclatural confusion for decades, with about 2/3 originally named as var. and 1/3 named as subsp. While there are technical differences between the two, most modern botanists use one or the other & think of them more or less interchangably. In 2008, I published a scientific paper (Phytologia 90(1): 63-82) establishing variety names for all Castillejas previously named as subspecies, and I follow these names in my work. For example, Castilleja exserta subsp. venusta is used in the Jepson Manual, whereas I prefer to use the published combination, var. venusta. These varietal names are now established for North America with their publication of our treatment of Castilleja in Vol. 17 of the Flora of North America (June 2019). If you'd like to read a copy of the earlier nomenclatural paper, it is available as a free PDF download at the Phytologia website:

The coded photo names match those in my own full image collection. Using "Egger_123_pal_inv_14" as an example, "egger123" is the collection number of the actual voucher collected as a scientific specimen and deposited in a university herbarium (My voucher specimens are deposited primarily at the University of Washington Herbarium (WTU), with duplicates sent to other herbaria, when possible). "pal_inv" is a three-letter code for the species and variety, in this case C. pallescens var. inverta. The final number, 14, is the sequential number of my photos for that particular species, in this case my 14th image of this variety of C. pallescens. Other images having the code "egger_n_c" are images for which I did not make a physical specimen voucher collection, usually for reasons of plant conservation, as in a rare species or when few plants were present in the local population.

I am also happy to try to identify any and all Castilleja photos you might want to call to my attention, e-mail to me, or post on Flickr or other image sites. If you do so, please tell me when and where you took the photo -- that will often help narrow it down. And please take SIDE-ON shots, as I do, not top-down. While paintbrushes are lovely when imaged top-down, these photos are almost worthless for precise species ID. Several side views, one showing aspect and at least one close-up of upper leaves, stem pubescence, and mature inflorescence is the ultimate objective if ID is the primary purpose of the photography. Also, I think the beauty of the given species is best seen at the side angle as well, but that's just me...

Castilleja zempoaltepetlensis G.L. Nesom


31 photos