Desert Flowers



 

 

Broom snakeweed (Gutierrezia sarothrae) – A native North American plant, it can be toxic to domestic sheep, goats, and cattle when consumed in large quantities. Native Americans used this plant medicinally to treat snakebites, ant bites, and bee and wasp stings. They also bound the stems together to make brooms.

 

 

Gray camphor weed (Heterotheca canescens) lines many arroyos as a thick shrubby herb and is easily looked over until its bright showy flowers emerge.  This misunderstood genus from the family Asteraceae produces different seeds from the ray flowers and disc flowers.

 

 

 

Fragrant heliotrope (Heliotropium greggii) is a diminutive plant.  For the past two years, it has been creating a significant ground cover on our sandy soils here in the Chihuahuan Desert.  The bright happy flower can remind one of an egg.

 

 

Bush muhly (Muhlenbergia porteri) is a particularly stunning grass in the fall.  It forms dense purplish mounds (usually at the base of shrubs) with a fine spray of inflorescences.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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