Helianthus microcephalus
Small wood sunflower

Key Characteristics

Tall forb (1-2 m) of dry open woods; stems hairless and unbranched, bearing lanceolate leaves with distinct petioles; flowers yellow, small (discs <1 cm wide, rays <1.5 cm long).

Status and Rank

  • State Status: X
  • State Rank: SX
  • Global Rank: G5

Occurrences

No known occurrences in Michigan

Updated 1/31/2017. Information is summarized from MNFI's database of rare species and community occurrences. Data may not reflect true distribution since much of the state has not been thoroughly surveyed.

Habitat

Known only from a single collection in southwestern Lower Michigan, where it was collected from "dry wood borders." It has not been seen in Michigan since 1903.

Natural Community Types

Methodology

For each species, lists of natural communities were derived from review of the nearly 6,500 element occurrences in the MNFI database, in addition to herbarium label data for some taxa. In most cases, at least one specimen record exists for each listed natural community. For certain taxa, especially poorly collected or extirpated species of prairie and savanna habitats, natural community lists were derived from inferences from collection sites and habitat preferences in immediately adjacent states (particularly Indiana and Illinois). Natural communities are not listed for those species documented only from altered or ruderal habitats in Michigan, especially for taxa that occur in a variety of habitats outside of the state.

Natural communities are not listed in order of frequency of occurrence, but are rather derived from the full set of natural communities, organized by Ecological Group. In many cases, the general habitat descriptions should provide greater clarity and direction to the surveyor. In future versions of the Rare Species Explorer, we hope to incorporate natural community fidelity ranks for each taxon.

Feel free to send questions and comments to Brad Slaughter at slaugh14@msu.edu.

Associated Plants

No associate data are known for Michigan. Elsewhere, such as in Indiana, this species occurs on dry, sandy wooded slopes with black and white oak.

Management

A status survey is the primary need for this species. If found, it would likely benefit from maintenance of oak savanna habitat through prescribed fires and clearing of excessive woody brush and exotic species.

General Survey Guidelines

Random meander search covers areas that appear likely to have rare taxa, based on habitat and the judgment of the investigator.

Survey Methods

Page Citation

Michigan Natural Features Inventory. 2007. Rare Species Explorer (Web Application). Available online at http://mnfi.anr.msu.edu/explorer [Accessed Apr 24, 2017]

References

Survey References

Technical References

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