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Castilleja purpurea var. citrina (Pennell) Shinners
Lemon paintbrush, Yellow paintbrush, Yellow prairie paintbrush, Citron paintbrush, Prairie paintbrush, Prairie Indian paintbrush
USDA Symbol: CAPUC
USDA Native Status: Native to U.S.
Castilleja purpurea var. citrina, Lemon Paintbrush, shares most of the characteristics of its species, C. purpurea (Prairie Paintbrush), but has yellow floral bracts and a longer and more flaring lower corolla lip than varieties lindheimeri and purpurea. It is a grassland perennial found in gravelly or sandy limestone soils from central Kansas to central and west Texas. Like many Castilleja species, it has adapted to its prairie environment by becoming semi-parasitic on grass roots, so planting it alongside prairie grasses would be ideal for it.
Plant CharacteristicsDuration: Perennial Habit: Herb Leaf Retention: Deciduous Leaf Arrangement: Alternate Leaf Complexity: Simple Leaf Shape: Lanceolate
, Linear Leaf Pubescence:
Villose Leaf Margin: Entire Breeding System:
, Monoecious Inflorescence: Spike Size Notes:
Usually 6-9 inches high but can be twice that Leaf:
Green to grey-green Flower: Bract
spikes to 6 inches Fruit: Size Class:
Bloom InformationBloom Color: Yellow
Bloom Time: Mar , Apr , May , Jun , Jul
Bloom Notes: Usually blooms in May. Color ranges from pale to bright.
KS , OK , TX Native Distribution:
Central Kansas south to central and west Texas Native Habitat:
Gravelly and sandy calcareous grasslands USDA Native Status: L48(N)
Growing ConditionsWater Use: Low
Light Requirement: Sun
Soil Moisture: Dry
Soil pH: Alkaline (pH>7.2)
Drought Tolerance: High
Heat Tolerant: yes
Soil Description: Gravelly or sandy, calcareous (limestone)
Conditions Comments: Does best if planted among prairie grasses, as its semi-parasitic on their roots.
Spring flowers good for meadows, prairies, and perennial
gardens with calcareous soils Use Wildlife:
Attracts pollinating insects. Conspicuous Flowers:
PropagationPropagation Material: Seeds
Commercially Avail: yes
Maintenance: If plants seem to be in decline, plant prairie grasses next to them.
Herbarium Specimen(s)NPSOT 0794
Collected Apr 27, 1994 in Bexar County by Mike FoxNPSOT 0792
Collected Apr 27, 1994 in Bexar County by Mike Fox
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Record Modified: 2009-12-05
Research By: TWC Staff, GDG