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Eriogonum wrightii (Wright's buckwheat)
Anderson, Wynn

Eriogonum wrightii

Eriogonum wrightii Torr. ex Benth.

Wright's Buckwheat, Bastard-sage, Wild Buckwheat, Perennial Buckwheat, Shrubby Buckwheat, Shrubby Bastard-sage

Polygonaceae (Buckwheat Family)



USDA Native Status: L48 (N)

Wild buckwheat is a woody shrub, 2-3 feet tall, with several slender branches. The whole plant is gray. At ground level it is surrounded by a thick mat of white, woody leaves about 1 inch long, but those along the stem are narrow and inconspicuous. The white, tubular flowers are in clusters, usually attached directly to the stem along the upper 2 inches, though some are scattered lower on the branches. Each flower has reddish sepals and bracts and a red stripe on the underside of the petal. In cool weather the flowers turn reddish-orange. The plants are found in association with juniper and sagebrush.

The species name of this plant is for Charles Wright, 1811-1885, world-wide botanical collector but mainly in Texas (1837-1852), Cuba and his native Connecticut.


From the Image Gallery

6 photo(s) available in the Image Gallery

Plant Characteristics

Duration: Perennial
Habit: Herb
Fruit Type: Achene
Size Notes: Up to about 3 feet tall.
Leaf: White-Gray
Flower: Flowers 1/4 inch

Bloom Information

Bloom Color: White , Pink
Bloom Time: Jun , Jul , Aug , Sep , Oct


USA: AZ , CA , NM , NV , TX , UT
Native Distribution: CA coast through desert mts. to w. TX & adjacent Mex.
Native Habitat: Hillsides, Slopes

Growing Conditions

Water Use: Low
Light Requirement: Part Shade
Soil Moisture: Dry
CaCO3 Tolerance: None
Soil Description: Dry, rocky soils. Caliche type, Limestone-based, Sandy, Sandy Loam, Medium Loam, Clay Loam, Clay
Conditions Comments: Drought tolerant. Good for erosion control.


Use Ornamental: Erosion control, Rock gardens, Rocky hillside
Use Wildlife: This is a deer browse plant and a source of nectar.
Conspicuous Flowers: yes

Value to Beneficial Insects

Special Value to Native Bees
Supports Conservation Biological Control

This information was provided by the Pollinator Program at The Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation.

Butterflies and Moths of North America (BAMONA)

Veined Blue
(Plebejus neurona)

Larval Host
Learn more at BAMONA


Propagation Material: Seeds
Description: Propagation by seed is possible.
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: yes

From the National Organizations Directory

According to the species list provided by Affiliate Organizations, this plant is on display at the following locations:

Santa Barbara Botanic Garden - Santa Barbara, CA


Bibref 1186 - Field Guide to Moths of Eastern North America (2005) Covell, C.V., Jr.
Bibref 1185 - Field Guide to Western Butterflies (Peterson Field Guides) (1999) Opler, P.A. and A.B. Wright
Bibref 318 - Native Texas Plants: Landscaping Region by Region (2002) Wasowski, S. & A. Wasowski
Bibref 248 - Texas Wildflowers: A Field Guide (1984) Loughmiller, C. & L. Loughmiller

Search More Titles in Bibliography

Web Reference

Webref 38 - Flora of North America (2019) Missouri Botanical Garden, St. Louis, MO & Harvard University Herbaria, Cambridge, MA.
Webref 23 - Southwest Environmental Information Network (2009) SEINet - Arizona Chapter

Additional resources

USDA: Find Eriogonum wrightii in USDA Plants
FNA: Find Eriogonum wrightii in the Flora of North America (if available)
Google: Search Google for Eriogonum wrightii


Record Modified: 2023-02-09
Research By: TWC Staff

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