The two-lobed upper lip arches forward, the three-lobed lower lip is bent downward and back giving the flower a unique look compared to other Mimulus species.  Hairy tubular calyx. Newport Beach Environmental Nature Center, Newport Beach, CA. cultivated 6-9-07. © Joan Avise

Scarlet Monkeyflower

Mimulus cardinalis

A perennial found along streams in foothills and Santa Ana Mountains.  Plants have extensive below-ground stems (rhizomes) and can form large clones. Flowers are nectar-rich, attracting hummingbirds whose foreheads transfer pollen between flowers. 

Phrymaceae

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Stamens+pistils exserted, anthers fringed. Newport Beach Environmental Nature Center, Newport Beach, CA. 7-31-11. © Joan Avise

Bifid stigma. Newport Beach Environmental Nature Center, Newport Beach, CA. Cultivated. 7-29-11. © Joan Avise

Opposite, sharply toothed leaves. Newport Beach Environmental Nature Center, Newport Beach, CA. cultivated 7-31-11. © Joan Avise

Softly hairy. San Juan Loop Trail, Cleveland National Forest, Riverside Co., CA 7-18-10. © Joan Avise

San Juan Loop Trail, Cleveland National Forest, Riverside Co., CA 7-11-10. © Joan Avise

Grows to 3 ft.; on stream banks. San Juan Loop Trail, Cleveland National Forest, Riverside Co., CA 7-11-10. © Joan Avise

San Juan Loop Trail, Cleveland National Forest, Riverside Co., CA 7-18-10. © Joan Avise

San Juan Loop Trail, Cleveland National Forest, Riverside Co., CA 7-11-10. © Peter J. Bryant