Niebla juncosa

©The World Botanical Associates Web Page
Prepared by Richard W. Spjut
April 2003, Oct. 2005, Sep 2012
Additional images May 2017

Niebla and Vermilacinia (Ramalinaceae) from California and Baja California.  
Spjut, R.W., 1996. ISSN 0833-1475, 208 pp.  
Sida, Botanical Miscellany 14. Botanical Research Institute of Texas, Inc.

Evolutionary history of coastal species of fog lichen genera
, Ramalina and Vermilacinia
Emmanuel Sérusiaux & Richard  Spjut
Baja California, Jan-Feb 2016

Evolution and diversification of Niebla
Steve Leavitt et al., Baja California, Dec 2016




Var. juncosa. Bahía de San
Quintín, Leavitt et al. 16-707, Dec 2016,


juncosa-11449.jpg (40787 bytes)

Var. juncosa. Arroyo Sauces, 
between Punta Canoas and Punta Blanca, Spjut & Marin 11449
Apr 1990, Divaricatic acid 
(TLC Jan 1993)

juncosa10000j-isotype-1.jpg (85181 bytes)

Var. juncosa.  Ridge S of El Marron,
500 m, between Punta Negra and 
Punta Rocosa, Spjut 10000J, May 
1986, Divaricatic acid (TLC Oct 1987), isotype,

juncosa-11535.jpg (40826 bytes)

Var. juncosa. Punta Cono, 
Spjut & Marin 11535
Apr 1990, Divaricatic acid 
(TLC Aug 1990)

niebla_juncosa_9834.jpg (96040 bytes)

Var. juncosa
Morro Santo Domingo, 
Spjut 9834, May 1986

niebla_juncosa_11577.jpg (220924 bytes)

Var. juncosa 
Bahía Santa María, 
Spjut & Marin 11577
Apr 1990

niebla_juncosa_11387.jpg (147660 bytes)

Var. juncosa 
San José Ranch, 
Spjut & Marin 11387
Apr 1990

Var. juncosa 
Peak above Punta Rocosa
Spjut 10334
Mar 1988

Var. juncosa 
Between Campo Nuevo and
Punta San Carlos
Spjut 12764
Apr 1993


Niebla sp. aff. juncosa
Morro Santo Domingo, Spjut & Sérusiaux 17027, Feb 2016,

Var. spinulifera. Bahía de San
Quintín, Spjut 10234, Mar 1988, Divaricatic acid (TLC Apr 1988)


Var. spinulifera. Bahía de San
Quintín, Spjut & Sérusiaux 17027, Jan 2016,

Var. spinulifera. Bahía de San
Quintín, Leavitt et al. 16-706, Dec 2016,

spinulifera-10237.jpg (141415 bytes)

Var. spinulifera.
Bahía de San Quintín,
Spjut 10237
, Mar 1988,
Divaricatic acid (TLC Apr 1988)

spinulifera-12660.jpg (80484 bytes)

Var. spinulifera
SW of El Rosario
on mesa above Punta Baja, Spjut &
Marin 12660
, Mar 1993, Divaricatic
acid (TLC Sep 1993)

spinulifera-12661.jpg (75908 bytes)

Var. spinulifera.
 SW of El Rosario on mesa above
Punta Baja, Spjut &
Marin 12661
, Mar 1993, Divaricatic acid (TLC Sep 1993)

     Niebla juncosa is a lichen that is endemic to Baja California, ranging from the southern part of the Northern Vizcaíno Desert at Morro Santo Domingo to Punta Banda in the Chaparral region.  It occurs on rocks along ridges and on sand under bushes near sea level.  It is  recognized by its bushy growth and basal branches that are long linear-like before slightly expanding and becoming fringed with similar branchlets, all of which gradually narrow towards apex, but usually break off, and by the branches having sharply defined margins and relatively smooth cortex. 

     Two varieties are recognized by the regular and irregular orientation of branches and branchlets; the typical variety has branches oriented mostly in the same direction, usually erect to falcate secund (curved in same direction), in contrast to interwoven branches of var. spinulifera.  Also, the branch margins scarcely alternate or twist in var. juncosa, and the branches break off near apices. In contrast, var. spinulifera has twisted branches with spinuliferous side branchlets that break off near base or junction with the main branch.

     The type for var. juncosa was collected on the upper surface of rocks on a ridge south of El Marrón where it was locally abundant.  It also was found growing on sand under bushes in a Yucca valida woodland at Morro Santo Domingo.  It is similar to N. infundibula that differs by a rigid thallus in which the branchlets remain intact, in contrast to the thallus breaking apart in var. juncosa

     Variety spinulifera is usually terricolous north of Campo Nuevo, but also occurs on rocks of ridges throughout much of Baja California Norte along the Pacific Coast. It is similar to saxicolous N. fimbriata that differs in having sekikaic acid (as opposed to divaricatic acid in both varieties of  N. juncosa), and by the more conspicuous reticulate ridges between margins.