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Flaigg, Norman G.
Eriogonum inflatum Torr. & Frém.
Desert trumpet, Indian-pipeweed
USDA Symbol: ERIN4
USDA Native Status: Native to U.S.
This 1-2 ft. species is often considered a desert annual, but the root may tap deeply enough to carry it over for a few seasons. A spindly plant with 1 or few leafless, erect stems swollen just below branches. Spoon-shaped leaves lie flat against the ground and send up forked and reforked branches, the main branches conspicuously inflated. From branch tips are borne small, graceful clusters of yellow-green, tubular flowers.
This is a common desert plant, conspicuous because of the stark, swollen, gray-green stems, which have a pleasant sour taste. Dried stems were used by Native Americans as tobacco pipes, hence one of its common names.
Plant CharacteristicsDuration: Annual Habit: Herb Fruit: Size Class:
Bloom InformationBloom Color: Yellow , Green
Bloom Time: Mar , Apr , May , Jun , Jul , Aug , Sep , Oct
AZ , CA , CO , NM , NV , UT Native Distribution:
W. CO & AZ to deserts of s. CA & Baja; reported on desert hills of WY Native Habitat:
Deserts washes & mesas below 6000 ft. USDA Native Status: L48(N)
Growing ConditionsLight Requirement: Sun
Soil Moisture: Dry
Soil Description: Rocky soils.
Conditions Comments: Drought tolerant.
Propagate by seed. Seed Collection:
The three-sided achene
can be hand-stripped from the plant. Seed Treatment:
Seeds of this genus
generally germinate without pretreatment but in such a large genus,
a variety of germination responses can be expected. Commercially Avail:
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Record Modified: 2007-01-01
Research By: TWC Staff