I’ll sneak in one more photograph from my Pacific Northwest travels before we return to a more global selection of plants.
Scarlet gilia was featured once before on BPotD. I can now confirm that the crushed foliage does indeed smell skunky, with an overtone of tar. The smell isn’t entirely pleasant, but it’s worth making the acquaintance when spotting the plant in a new location.
The genus Ipomopsis is distributed almost entirely in western North America. One species, Ipomopsis rubra, is found throughout most of the eastern USA and another single species is native to southern South America, Ipomopsis gossypifera. This latter disjunct species is considered to be “a particularly obvious case of amphitropical dispersal from North America to South America” by Porter et al., 2009, Phylogenetic Systematics of Ipomopsis (Polemoniaceae): Relationships and Divergence Times Estimated from Chloroplast and Nuclear DNA sequences (PDF). In other words, a long-distance dispersal occurred from North America to South America. This likely occurred via the sticky mucilaginous coating surrounding the seeds being attached to a bird during migration. Ipomopsis gossypifera‘s nearest relative is Ipomopsis pumila.