Rogue River stonecrop is endemic to southwest Oregon, where it is found only along a less than 96km (60mi.) strip of the Rogue River and its tributaries. It is considered a Sensitive Species in Oregon and Critically Imperiled by the USDA. Threats to remaining plants listed by the USDA include: horticultural collecting for rock gardens, trail maintenance, recreational use of its habitat, and flooding. I’ve seen the result of horticultural overcollecting on other species (e.g., Cistanthe tweedyi), and I would say that there isn’t much apparent evidence of plant-collecting at this site. In the instance of the Cistanthe, it was quite apparent that the density of individuals in a given area was higher (sometimes much) where plants were inaccessible. Here, for the few plants that I observed (one didn’t have to go far), most were easily accessible both in terms of the distance from the vehicle and within 2.5m (8 ft.) up the face of the cliffs. A few plants even had potential for “drive-thru” photography–you could sit in your vehicle and photograph them out the side window.
Sedum moranii is named in honour of the now recently-deceased Dr. Reid Moran (scroll down linked page for short article), a US-born botanist (1916-2010). He was the Curator of Botany at the San Diego Natural History Museum from 1957 to 1982 and the author of the Flora of North America treatment for the Crassulaceae.
For local readers in the Vancouver, BC and Seattle, WA areas: in Vancouver, the Beaty Biodiversity Museum is hosting a photography exhibition called Interaction beginning March 6th, which will include sixteen photographs of mine. Read more on the Beaty’s events page. For those of you in or around Seattle, the Miller Library is hosting a botanical art exhibit from March 2nd to March 29th in conjunction with the conference “Conserving Plant Biodiversity in a Changing World: A View from NW North America”. I have two photographs in that exhibit, as well.