Showy goldeneye is a western species. Variety multiflora is the most widely distributed, occurring in Montana, Idaho, Wyoming, Colorado, Utah, Nevada, Arizona, New Mexico, and Texas. Variety nevadensis is more southerly, occurring in California, Nevada, Utah, Arizona, New Mexico, and as far south as Jalisco, Mexico. Variety brevifolia occurs in Utah, Arizona, and New Mexico (Schilling 2006). Variety multiflora is found at higher elevations or in moister habitats than variety nevadensis where their distributions overlap (Cronquist 1994). In Montana, variety multiflora is primarily found in the southern part of the state (USDA FS 1937). In Utah, variety multiflora occurs in all counties, variety nevadensis occurs in Grand, Juab, Uintah, and Washington counties, and variety brevifolia occurs only in Beaver County (Welsh et al. 1987; USDA NRCS 2017). In California, variety nevadensis is found east of the Sierra Nevada range (Hickman 1993).