FWS Focus



Ione buckwheat is an upright perennial that produces small white flowers from July to October and is typically found growing interspersed within populations of Ione manzanita. It was listed as endangered on May 26, 1999.

Ione buckwheat is known only from an approximate 10 mile (16 kilometer) stretch along the Ione Formation in western Amador County. All historical and current occurrences are between the village of Buena Vista in the south and Highway 16 in the north. At the time of listing, it was suggested that the range of Ione buckwheat may extend to cover portions of Sacramento County; however, surveys conducted in 2001 placed all plants in Amador County.

Ione buckwheat is rare and occurs in a patchy distribution wherever openings in the shrub community exist. The plant continues to be threatened by: 

  • Mining
  • Road construction
  • Development 
  • Disease

Scientific Name

Eriogonum apricum
Common Name
Ione buckwheat
Ione (incl. Irish Hill) buckwheat
FWS Category
Flowering Plants

Location in Taxonomic Tree

Identification Numbers



Characteristic category



Land on which the natural dominant plant forms are grasses and forbs.


A landmass that projects conspicuously above its surroundings and is higher than a hill.

Characteristic category

Life Cycle


Flowering occurs chiefly from May to October, though flowers may be found on individual plants at any season of the year. Ione buckwheat is a prolific seeder. The seeds drop from the plant along with the dried calyx, the calyx allows for limited seed dispersion via floatation on surface runoff.

Characteristic category

Physical Characteristics

Size & Shape

Ione buckwheat is a perennial that grows upright and reaches to 3 to 8 inches (8 to 20 centimeters) in height.  Its leaves are smooth, round to oval, and 3 to 10 millimeters (0.1 to 0.4 inch) wide. The plant produces small white flowers from July to October. There are two varieties that exhibit different physical characteristics related to the leaf and the inflorescence, and the varieties typically do not co-occur.



Amador County, California

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