Sorry that I keep going back and forth between Death Valley and the Potomac Gorge. I still have lots to post about that trip, but things are happening fast at home, so the blog posts are going to bounce around for awhile yet.
So, back to Death Valley… Purplemat is not particularly showy, given that it stands no more than three inches above the ground, but it is pretty up close. There are two varieties, demissa and covillei; without more detailed pictures I can’t be sure, but I believe the plant shown here is the former.
penny for scale
About the botanic name: ITIS accepts the specific epithet demissa, and demissum as an unaccepted orthographic variant. Nonetheless, you’ll see demissum often on the internet. Also, other sources place this plant in the Hydrophyllaceae.