San Diego Natural History Museum--Your Nature ConnectionSDNHM Field Guide
Hazardia squarrosa var grindelioides
Synonym: Haplopappus squarrosa ssp. grindelioides
Sawtooth Goldenbush



Shrubby plant to 2 m tall; leaves thick and leathery to stiffly papery, sharply toothed; inflorescence composed of yellow, disk flowers; flowers and fruits present from June to October.

General Distribution

Southwestern California to northwestern Baja California.


Formerly recognized in the large genus Haplopappus. In San Diego County, all of the goldenbush species that were in Haplopappus are now recognized in the genera Ericameria, Isocoma, Machaeranthera, and Hazardia.

There are two species of Hazardia in San Diego County. Hazardia orcuttii (a sensitive species) has entire leaves that can be distinguished from the "sawtooth" leaf margin typical of H. squarrosa. In California, three varieties are recognized within H. squarrosa and two of them occur in San Diego County. Hazardia squarrosa var. grindelioides is our most common variety, and H. squarrosa var. squarrosa (with more flowers/head and glandular involucres) has just been documented by the Plant Atlas project.

Note that a related shrub species from Baja California (H. berberidis) almost reaches the USA/Mexico border. In fact, this Baja California endemic ranges as far north as Los Coronados Islands just off the coast of Tijuana, which can be seen from many areas in San Diego. Hazardia berberidis has larger flowering heads and yellow ray flowers present.

The Sawtooth Goldenbush is especially easy to see when in flower (from summer to fall).

Hazardia squarrosa, close-up of flower, photo by Jeannie Gregory

Hazardia squarrosa plant, photo by Jeannie Gregory

Hazardia squarrosa plant, photo by Jeannie Gregory

Text by Jon Rebman, Ph.D.; photos by Jeannie Gregory

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